Deer Behavior

Have you ever watched a deer from your stand and wondered, “Why do they do that?” Whitetails are fascinating creatures, and understanding the many facets of their behavior enhances this addicting pursuit. Learn all about deer behavior and biology from the top biologists in the country.

fawning

The Whitetail’s Secret Weapon: Birth Timing

The whitetails’ reproductive cycle is geared to giving birth when conditions are best for newborn fawn survival. As you progress northward in the whitetail’s geographic range, a greater percentage of the fawns will be born during a relatively brief period in late May and early June. This is when new, lush vegetation provides excellent...

Dan Schmidt Texas deer

Intense Whitetail Management: South Texas Lessons, Clues for Trophy Buck Potential

The white-tailed deer’s popularity is especially augmented by its adaptability and abundance. This malleable herbivore is not only abundant, but it also can live just about anywhere — from our back yards to the deep, dark forests of Canada, providing sportsmen ample and affordable hunting opportunities. By Bob Zaiglin Although the whitetail has always...

State wildlife agencies use spotlight surveys, and hunters sometimes do this on their own property along with game camera photos to keep up with bucks and does.

Revealed: The Truth About Spotlight Deer Surveys

Hunters expect wildlife managers to determine how many deer there are in an area, and biologists strive to do so. Common approaches to examine deer population size and trends include harvest data reconstruction, pellet and track counts, and browse, camera, aerial, infrared and thermal-imaging surveys. By John J. Ozoga Deer & Deer Hunting Contributor...

Dobie A rare snowstorm on the last day of the hunt at Greystone Castle during the peak of the rut made it easier to spot mature bucks chasing does. (Photo: Duncan Dobie)

High Fence vs. Free Range: A Deer Hunter’s View from Both Sides

As I picked yet another cactus needle from my knee I smiled thinking about the fond memories of a Texas whitetail hunt in early December 2011. You always hope every hunt is memorable, and this one certainly had been that. I had hunted on a beautiful ranch with a great outfitter, I had shared...

Now that we are in March, most white-tailed bucks have shed their antlers. (Deer & Deer Hunting photo)

Shed Hunting Tips: Where to Find Antlers

    There’s not a lot better to beat cabin fever than spring shed hunting! Lately with the winters we’ve been having, the spring shed season seems like late winter. Either way, here’s our guide to finding shed antlers and getting a jump on next season’s scouting. By Jason Herbert Gear Like many deer...

Antler pedicles are unique and can be matched with other shed antlers from the same deer.

Deer Antler Pedicles Are Unique, Like Fingerprints

Growth of antlers in white-tailed deer, along with elk and moose, is one of the most remarkable things in nature. Consider that from the time a deer’s antlers are shed in late winter, within just a couple of months they’re growing again. Hormonal changes spur the entire process, peaking in late summer when the...

White-tailed deer adapt and survive harsh winters in northern latitudes.

How Whitetail Deer Survive Incredibly Brutal Winters

When brutal winters roll into northern states deer hunters often wonder if the whitetail population will take a severe hit or if the animals can make it through to spring. Mortality for some is a given, of course, but how do deer and other wildlife manage to get through the frigid season? By John...

rubz

Rubs: The Whitetail’s Communication Hub

Humans learn by seeing. Deer do, too. When a hunter comes upon a big rub, his heart skips a beat. When a whitetail buck encounters a rub of any size, it has different thoughts. Our excitement has to do with hunting possibilities. A buck’s has to do with identifying who made the rub, because...