White-Tailed Deer




Animal White-tailed Deer
Common Name(s) White-tailed Deer, Whitetail
Scientific Name odocoileus virginianus
Adults are called Males: bucks or stags; Females: does
Young are called Fawns
Lifespan Ave. wild lifespan: 2 – 3 yrs; Ave. captive lifespan: 15 – 20 yrs.
Adult Size 6 – 7.75 ft. long; 2 – 3.5 tall (at shoulder)
Adult Weight Males: 150 – 300 lbs.; Females: 90 – 200 lbs.
Birth Size
Birth Weight 4 – 8 lbs.
Gestation Period 7 months
Number of Young 1 – 3 at a time
Where Found Southern Canada to South America.
Habitat Meadows, usingĀ  broad-leaved and coniferous as shade in the summer, and staying mostly in the forests during the winter.
Diet Legumes, leaves, cacti, grasses, acorns, fruit, corn, flower buds, mushrooms, hay, white clover, poison ivy, etc.
Conservation Status Least Concern
Threats Hunting, overpopulating, disease, and habitat destruction.
White-tailed deer are fairly large, but gentle creatures. The adults are generally a light brown, reddish in the spring and summer, and grayish in the fall and winter. Mature males have large sets of antlers in the summer and fall, making them easy to tell apart from females. Fawns are a deeper reddish brown with white spots. All ages have a white belly and the characteristic white underside of the tail. There is also a variation of this deer that is completely white, not albino.

Interesting Facts

  • Fawns white-spotted reddish brown coat helps them to blend into the forest.
  • Adult males’ antlers fall off in the winter, and re-grow annually in the spring.
  • Mostly crepuscular or nocturnal, which means they come out at dawn, dusk, or at night.
  • White-tailed deer can sprint up to 30 mph, and leap up to 10 ft high and as far as 30 ft in one bound.
  • These are the smallest of all North American deer.

Additional Resources

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White-tailed_deer
  • http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/white-tailed-deer/
  • http://sunwoodphotography.ca/?page_id=16
  • http://www.lifeinthenorthwoods.com/Nature/Albino-White-tailed-Deer/i-hGC4TDV
  • http://www.biokids.umich.edu/critters/Odocoileus_virginianus/
  • http://wildlifecontrol.info/pubs/Documents/Deer/Deer_factsheet.pdf