With a New Year just dawning, I thought I would write a post on our other animal friends vs. our pets. I decided to do a little research and post a short article on Deer. I really like Deer and think of them as graceful, beautiful, gentle creatures.
The word Deer was originally broad in meaning, but became more specific over time. It’s generally a wild animal of any kind.
Males are called Bucks and the females are called Doe(s), depending on their size. Larger male deer are called Stags. Terms for young deer vary also, the most common term is “Fawn” and the larger species are called Calves. Some of the rather small, young deer are called Kids. A group of deer are referred to as a Herd.
The majority of large deer species inhabit forests, mountain-mixed forests, and savanna habitats. Clearing open areas within forests, to some degree, may actually benefit deer populations and allow various types of grasses, weeds, and herbs to grow that deer like to eat.
The highest concentration of large deer species in temperate North America lies in the Canadian Rocky Mountain and Columbia Mountain Regions between Alberta and British Columbia where all five North American deer species:
Deer weights generally range from 70 to 600 lbs, and Moose average around 1,000 lbs.
They generally have slim, compact bodies and long, powerful legs suited for rugged woodland terrain. Deer are excellent jumpers and swimmers. They are cud-chewers, and have a four-chambered stomachs. Their teeth are adapted to feeding on vegetation and they lack upper incisors. Instead they have a tough pad at the front of their upper jaw.
Fawns are born with fur covered with white spots, which they usually lose by the end of their first winter. In the first twenty minutes of a fawn’s life, the fawn begins to take its first steps. Its mother licks it clean until it is almost free of scent, so predators will not find it.
Fawns stay hidden in high grass for approximately one week until they are strong enough to walk with their mother. Fawns and Mothers stay together for about one year. Once they leave, the Male usually never sees his mother again, the females, on the other hand, sometimes come back with their own fawns and form small herds.
Fawns are cared for by the mother only. A doe generally has one or two fawns at a time, triplets are uncommon.
Deer are selective feeders. They are usually browsers, and primarily feed on leaves. They have high nutrition needs. Rather than attempt to digest vast quantities of low-grade, fibrous food they select easily digestible shoots, young leaves, fresh grasses, soft twigs, fruit, fungi, and lichens.
You may read more on Deer at Wikipedia. org