Animal of the week The world’s smallest ungulate would be suitable as an elf-thunder horse

Cute dwarf deer have henceforth been proposed to be called pulpits.

Santa Claus rides a reindeer, but what do elves travel with? A little passing game for little helpers could be a dwarf goat.

The elves are probably quite small, so you could circle around on the back of a creature the size of a brown. A little rifleman from Southeast Asia should probably be accustomed to the cold, but wouldn’t that happen from fairy tale flights either?

Dwarf deer are thus the smallest ungulates in the world. The smallest of them, the Javanese goat, is only 30 centimeters tall and weighs a couple of kilograms. Poor thing!

These herbivores, reminiscent of a big mouse rather than a deer, live in the forests of Asia and bunny for fruit, berries and other forest products. One species, the dwarf goat, lives in the rainforests of West Africa.

They are ruminants, though quite rudimentary ones. Dwarf deer have no horns at all, but they have wild canines that don’t really affect the gentle nature of a suitable creature. Males irritate each other with their long teeth.

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They are, in principle, distantly related to reindeer, at least in the sense that they both belong to ungulates.

Thence to the taxonomic-etymological dilemma. Really, the Dwarf Capricorn is not Capricorn. English name mouse-deer nor does it hit the button when the creature is not a mouse either.

Therefore, in its wit, the Mammal Nomenclature Committee has proposed a new name for the animal in Finnish: kantsilli.

Kantsilli? The proposal is based on the Malay name of the dwarf deer chancellor. Still, it doesn’t sit right in the mouth, as do many of the committee’s other funny suggestions.

What name would you give this creature?

A Daihatsu-based small car called the Perodua Kancil is also being manufactured in Malaysia. It has 30 horsepower and a small bowl accelerates from zero to one hundred in 23 seconds. I guess someone with an elf like that could circle around.

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