3 Things You Many Know About Deer

Seneca White Deer of Upstate NY

Seneca White Deer of Upstate NY

The Deer is a ruminant mammal. This type of mammal is usually hoofed and horned, even- toed, cud chewing and has a stomach divided into four and sometimes three compartments. Examples of ruminant mammals are giraffes, sheep, goats, and cattle. The deer family also includes the moose, elk, reindeer and caribou.All male deer have antlers except for the Chinese Water Deer which have tusks. In the US, the majority of the States have hunting seasons intended to control deer population. Here are three things you probably did not know about Deer.

1. In the state of New York there is a species simply known as the White Deer. This is the result of a recessive gene that has been passed down through the genetic links. The difference between White deer and Albino deer is that white deer lack all pigmentation in the hair and they have normal brown colored eyes while Albino deer only lack one pigment(melanin) and have pink eyes. Colonel Franklin Kemble, Jr. who was the Depot Commander in Seneca Army Depot allowed hunting to reduce the size of the herd but protected the white deer. He is responsible for the existence of the large white deer herd in NY today.

2. Most people don’t know that deer are amazing when it comes to swimming. They can swim up to 13 miles per hour! They prefer to walk on firm ground and will use the high ground of the swamp for their normal travel routes to avoid the need to enter the water. However, they can swim well and they do better in the muddy terrain than any of their predators. They will not swim to escape unless they really need to.

3. The average lifespan for deer in the wild is 15- 20 years but a few only live past 10 years. The deer lifespan varies depending on several factors including location and species. The average lifespan of a whitetail deer is 4-5 years. However, it can vary based upon location and the species.

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Deer generally have a homeland range that spans out 20-30 miles. Unless there is strong motivation to do otherwise, they stay within and move around that area while consistently finding different places to eat and sleep. Deer travel in family groups of a mother and her fawns.  Mountain lions and wolves have been the historical top predators for deer. Because of human development and hunting, the natural predators of deer have diminished over the years. Dogs and coyotes are also common predators of deer. In suburban and urban areas, hunting is often not allowed so the use of deer repellent comes in handy for homeowners and farmers wishing to protect their cultivated plants. Products such as Deer Repellent Packs utilize Predator (coyote) Urine to trigger a deer’s instinctive fear of predators and cause them to flee the area where the scent is detected.

 

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