Alsheimer: Staying Cool – Close-Up of a Whitetail’s Radiator

By Charles J. Alsheimer

Alsheimer deer and deer hunting

A deer’s ears are hairless in the summer to allow heat to escape from the body and speed up the cooling process. (photo copyright Charles J. Alsheimer)

As the temperature rises and we retreat to our air-conditioned homes, some folks may wonder how deer manage to handle the heat of summer. A whitetail can cool down two ways – through their mouth or ears. Panting, similar to a dog, will allow some heat to escape through a deer’s mouth. The photo I took yesterday shows the veins in the ears as well as how the backs of the ears are hairless in summer. This also helps heat to easily escape the body and speed up the cooling process.

With abundant food and little fear of hunters or the extreme cold of winter, summer may seem like an easy time of year for whitetails. But the intense heat and humidity can push deer to seek refuge near water where the temperatures are even just a little lower. They will often spend much of their time bedded on the hottest days and nights to try and keep cool.

Insects can also take a toll on whitetails during the summer. Mosquitoes, flies, gnats, ticks and others can cause more stress on a deer than it might face in the winter months. Relief can be found – if only for a short time – with a breeze, a cool night, or by wading into a pond or stream.

– Charlie


Strategies for WhitetailsHunting season is right around the corner, and if you’re like us and starting to think about it every day then Strategies for Whitetails is worth a read. From Charles Alsheimer, host of “Deer & Deer Hunting TV” and northern field editor for Deer & Deer Hunting magazine, comes a powerful and practical guide for understanding and hunting whitetail deer.


  • Rutting behavior; the intriguing courtship between fawns and bucks, and the tale of the whitetail’s growth and unmatched survival behavior
  • Maximizing hunting opportunities during phases of the whitetail rut; exploring today’s hot topic — quality deer management and the role it plays in hunting
  • Friendships, culture, and community that is a foundational element in hunting, including Charles’ own personal story; along with advice on capturing the whitetail hunting experience on film

This book explores whitetail hunting in its entirety, with breathtaking photos that practically transport you to the woods. Treat yourself or your favorite hunter to the one must-have hunting book of the year.