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Watch the Video on Japanese Serows!

Today we are showing you a video called ‘Japanese serows, visitors to a village (人里にやってきたニホンカモシカ)’.
Japanese serows have lived in Japan for a very long time.
They are mentioned in the Manyoshu, an 8th century anthology of Japanese poetry, and the Nihonshoki (Chronicles of Japan).

Japanese serows are nicknamed the Philosophers of the Forest.
They look proud and stand with authority.
They remind you of Shishigami (シシ神 Shishigami) (The forest spirit from the Ghibli movie, Princess Mononoke).
With the video today, we will look into the habits and habitat of Japanese serows in detail.

What Kind of Animals Are Japanese Serows? How Big Are They? How Do They Live?

Image of Japanese serows
Photo:Japanese Serows

Japanese serows (Capricornis sumatraensis) are even-toed-ungulate mammal and Bovine antelope. They are an indigenous species in Japan and live in Eastern Honshu, Shikoku, and in parts of Kyushu.
They are not nomadic. Many wild Japanese serows are seen in Okutama and Ome in Tokyo and in the hills of Kanagawa Prefecture in the Kanto region, as well as in Japan's Shikoku region.

Japanese serows are between 105~112cm (41-44 in.) long and weigh around 30~45kg (~65-100 lbs).
When intimidating unwanted guests, or during their mating season, they make a high-pitched call.
You can find how old a Japanese serow is by looking at the rings on its horns.
The Japanese serow shown in the video has a broken horn. However, unlike deer, it will not grow back once broken.

Where Can I See Japanese Serows?

If you're lucky, you can see wild Japanese serows in the mountains of Japan.
You might even see ones with a baby in tow.
Throughout the video, the camera catches Japanese serows visiting from the hills. From 0:18 in the video, they come very close to the camera, yet they don’t seem to be scared of human beings.

Image of Tama Zoological Park
Photo:Tama Zoological Park

If you want to see Japanese serows in captivity, visit the places like Tama Zoological Park (多摩動物公園 Tama Dobutsu Koen), Inokashira Park Zoo (井の頭自然文化園 Inokashira Shizenbunka Koen), Oshima Park Zoo (大島公園動物園 Oshima Koen Dobutsuen) and Saitama Children’s Zoo(埼玉県こども動物自然公園 Saitama Kodomo Dobutsu Shizen Koen).

In the past, Japanese serows were temporarily endangered. However, the population has recovered very well, and their numbers continue to grow.
Despite being protected species, Japanese serow meat is occasionally eaten in the name of pest control in some regions. Apparently, the meat tastes rather plain and light.

Summary of the Video on Japanese Serows

We have introduced you to Japanese serows, an indigenous species to Japan. The video shows you Japanese serows for around 5 minutes. It's perfect if you want to learn the habits of this animal.

When you visit a zoo in Japan, please look out for handsome Japanese serows like in the video.

Written By
Last Updated : Apr. 3, 2022
坂崎 なお(Nao Sakazaki)
Interested in Japanese culture and traditions! I'll be introducing lovely scenery to you!

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Japanese Serows- This Protected Species Came to a Village From the Mountains! Japanese Serows Stand With Their Head up and Show No Sign of Fear of Humans. The Habits and Habitat of the Proud Japanese Serow!
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