07
Feb
10

Growing Up White-tail

At 3209 acres Lake Kegonsa State Park is big enough to have decent hiking and skiing but small enough for me to be able to identify individual deer.  For those of you not familiar with my history and new to this blog, I am not a professional photographer, I’m a hiker with a camera.  I have a friend who loves deer photos, so every week I spend one day hiking with the sole intention of taking deer pictures.  I have learned a lot about white-tailed deer and how to take photos of them in the past twenty or so months, which has added to my enjoyment of hiking.

One of the things I have learned about whitetails is a female whitetail will spend her entire life within one mile of where she is born, which makes identifying them easier. 

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One of the first whitetail photos I took.

I took that photo very early in the morning during the summer.  Early in the morning whitetail mothers move their young.  They find a safe place to leave them so they can go feed.  The doe above was moving her fawn when I walked out of the woods and spotted her.  When I realized she had her fawn with her, I began popping shots.

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The fawn showed why nothing runs like a deer.

I saw that doe and that fawn off and on the rest of that summer, but spent more time taking pictures of the father.  Buck-fever some would call it.  But hey, he is impressive.

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Here’s a photo of the proud father – his antlers still in velvet – from last summer.

During fall whitetails grow a second coat of fur to help them survive the cold.  I know you folks in Florida, Texas and other places in the south will find this difficult to believe but it gets really cold up here during winter.  The reddish summer coat gets covered with a grayish top coat.

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Since I haven’t marked these deer and have no desire to do so, I can only say that I am fairly certain this is the same female pictured above.  Which means, if this is the same female, then the young deer with her is the same deer leaping in the photo above. 

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White-tailed deer tend to be shy.

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She separated from her mother long enough to let me have this shot, then the three of them moved off into the brush.

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