Appearance: The white-tailed deer’s fur changes color with the seasons, from a reddish brown in spring and summer to a muted grey-brown throughout the fall and winter. Standing at up to 4 feet tall at the shoulder, a large buck (male deer) can easily weigh over 400lbs. They are easily recognized by the white underside of their tail. A deer will raise its tail when alarmed to warn of potential danger nearby. White-tailed deer are extremely wary animals with highly developed senses of sight, smell, and hearing. If seriously frightened, they will utter a loud, snorting call, and flee quickly with their tail raised to alert other deer nearby.
Habitat: White-tailed deer range throughout Central and North America and thrive in all habitats from mountain forests to coastal marshes. Extensive habitat destruction and unregulated hunting brought the white-tail deer population to a record low by the late 1800s. Changing land uses, imposing game laws, and the extirpation of the natural large predators have caused the white-tailed deer population to rebound, especially in our region.
Diet: Deer are crepuscular, meaning they feed mostly at dawn and at dusk. As herbivores, their diet includes leaves, twigs, bark, acorns, fruits, mushrooms, and sometimes crops like corn and soybeans.
Becca was wild-born in summer 2013 and brought to the Nature Center as a fawn in need of care because she was too young to survive on her own. She entered our rehab department, but it was quickly discovered that she was already imprinted. She has lived at the Nature Center ever since. Becca is very adjusted to our keepers and enjoys all the love and attention she receives.
Curly was born in 2012 and was kept illegally as a pet when he was a young fawn, so he was imprinted and didn’t learn how to survive in the wild on his own. We’ve named him Curly, because he has an abnormal antler growth called perruque. His antlers remain in the soft, velvet stage and continue to grow instead of hardening. He came to the Nature Center in summer 2020 and is adjusting well to his new home!