Mule Deer

The Mule Deer, which is also called the Blacktail, is a medium sized deer that has a stocky body and long sturdy legs.

In the summer time they are deep red brown or yellowish brown, and in winter turn to a grayish color with a throat and rump patch and the insides of legs are white.

Mule deer have very broad antlers that fork off into two tines and large ears that can move separately from each other and give the deer a comical look when he is curiously looking at you.

The Mule deers huge ears make it easy to recognize
The Mule deers huge ears make it easy to recognize

The Mule Deer is active mostly in early morning late evening and on a brightly lit moonlit night, and in midwinter will be see out in the late afternoon.

It has a very stiff legged walk with its back and front legs moving together, and is also a very good swimmer.

They will migrate when they live in hilly or in mountainous areas, in spring and fall so they can avoid heavy snowfall.

They will primarily eat herbs and plants but also enjoy browsing on the blackberry, huckleberry, salal, and thimbleberry plants in the summer. In the wintertime they eat twigs of Douglas fir, cedar, yew, aspen, willow, dogwood, serviceberry, juniper, and sage.

The Mule deer also enjoys eating acorns and apples.

Mule Deer will form herds, both sexes banding together for winter warmth, but they are seldom large., usually consisting of a doe and her fawn or twins, and a pair of yearlings from an earlier mating.

The unrelated does, when they come into contact with each other will very often fight, so family groups, or herds are usually spaced very widely between them so that there is enough food and cover for everyone in each group.

Mule Deer breed in autumn to early winter and after a mating, will go through a gestation of about 7 months, before producing one or two fawns, that weigh about 8 pounds each when they are born. They are hidden in a secure place not far from the mother as she browses and after about three months she will take them with her to the fields or browsing areas.

Mule deer have a broad range of land and habitat, living in forest edges, mountains, and foothills from the Southern Yukon Territory, to Wisconsin and Texas.

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