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As the name suggests, this is the largest muntjac species and is characterized by short, thick pedicles and long antlers and tines.

Headwaters in Quang Nam Province, part of the Central Annamites landscape. This landscape covers ... rel= © WWF / Marc GOICHOT

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Key Facts
Common name
Common Names

Giant muntjac, large antlered muntjac



Endangered (A2cd+3cd+4cd)

Latin name

Scientific Name

Muntiacus vuquangensis

Geographic place

Geographic Location


Like other large ungulate mammals, the giant muntjac is an important species which contributes to this unique biodiversity and helps keep the balance of the forest ecosystem. This means it also contributes to the food base of globally important endangered carnivores such as the tiger and leopard.

Physical Description
The giant muntjac  is most closely related to the common muntjac (Muntiacus muntjac) with which it is sympatric. It has a red/brown coat.

Population and Distribution
The giant muntjac is found in the Annamite mountain chain and associated hill ranges of  Lao PDR, Vietnam and eastern Cambodia. There is currently insufficient data to give accurate population numbers, and much information on its density and range is supplied through data from camera traps.

The IUCN believes current density levels suggest the population may have fallen sharply and is predicted to continue to deteriorate. The main threats are hunting and loss of habitat, primarily through slash and burn agriculture. Some data on the range of the giant muntjac is based on the location of trophy antlers. Hunting has become more of a threat as traps and hunting methods have become more sophisticated.

What is WWF doing?

WWF's work in the Annamite mountain range helps to support the conservation of endangered species such as the giant muntjac. For example, the MOSAIC project involves working with both local villagers and forest officials to design and implement sustainable management practices.

If successful, the MOSAIC project will serve as a model for conservation throughout the entire Greater Mekong region.

Priority region

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  • The giant muntjac was only discovered in 1994 - by researchers who were looking for information on the saola, another newly discovered species!
  • Muntjacs are also known as barking deer
  • Muntjacs are  the oldest known deer, appearing 15-35 million years ago.