The White-tailed Deer is an extremely adaptable animal. All they require is food, water, and cover. In late summer and early fall, which is when all the following photos were made, I find the best viewing in soy bean fields (food). I find, while eating, they tend to give an intruder, me, a little more time before fleeing into the woods. Below is a female, called a doe, following a path through a soy bean field.
Let's face it, all wildlife babies are cute. But, the Whitetail fawn, to me, is the most beautiful baby in the woods. Just like my litter sister Shelties, when one does something, the sibling has to follow. Whitetail seem to be no different. These two fawns weren't quite sure about me. They paced and circles the edge of the woods before striking this pose.
As if it was trying to hide, the fawn peeks over the head of its sibling.
This is a nice, symmetrical, 8-point buck with velvet still covering its growing antlers. I haven't been back into his area lately to see how the antlers matured. Maybe I'll see him again in the next few weeks.
I came across a couple doe and their families feeding in a meadow. I don't know my "weeds" very well so I'll just say, "look at all those burs stuck to her fur".
It seems like the fawn has been following close to mom as it is covered in burs too.
In the summer, the coat of the White-tailed Deer lacks an undercoat. It is made up of a coat of short guard hairs that are mostly reddish in color. Deer have very few sweat glands so these short hairs allow them to keep cool by providing air circulation.
Here is a little fawn, tail wagging, feeding in a meadow.
Mom on the other hand, is wary of the guy with the big lens, and stomps her foot. There have been studies, by scientists, on why mammals stomp their feet. They believe there are five reasons:
1) To proclaim a territory
2) To defend territories or mates
3) Part of mating interactions
4) To indicate subordinance
5) To communicate danger from predators
In the case of deer, it is believed the primary purpose of hoof stomping is to communicate the presence of danger. It isn't known whether it's intentional or a nervous reaction, but it does send the message that something is not quite right.
One early September morning, I came across this fawn in the early morning light. The spots are fading as it's winter coat is coming in.
It was nearing darkness when I came across these two bucks in a field of soy beans. Although they were about 150 yards away, they stood still long enough to get a decent quality shot after cropping. Take note, the antlers of the buck on the left is still covered in velvet while the buck on the right has already shed his velvet.
That last photo is a good Segway into my next blog post titled "The Boys Of Autumn". Check back soon for a blog post dedicated to the buck.
Thanks for looking,