Two trials were conducted on water intake of red deer stages to provide a basis on which to determine water requirements for deer farms. In the first trial, water intake from a trough by 13 15-month-old deer stags was monitored for 16 days while they grazed dryland pasture during a spell of dry weather (March - April 1988) in Canterbury. Voluntary water intake (VWI) from the trough was 2.6 litre/hd/d and intake of water ingested in feed (40% DM) was estimated to be 4.2 litre/hd/d, giving a total water intake (TWI) of 6.8 litre/hd/d (or 0.19 litre/kg W0.75/d). In the second trial, 12 3- to 5-year-old stags were held indoors in pens and fed (n=6) either pasture silage (27% DM) or pellets (88% DM) in a crossover design with Period 1 of 33 days duration and Period 2 of 25 days. VWI and DMI were monitored daily for 15 days in Period 1 and 14 days in Period 2. TWI for silage was greater than for the pellets (10.6 v 4.6 litre/hd/d, respectively) but the stags drank more water when consuming pellets. There was evidence of a linear relationship between TWI and DMI.

DW, Dellow, Y Obara, KE Kelly, and BR Sinclair

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 48, , 253-256, 1988
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