(click on images for larger view)
|Two California Mule Deer|
The deer had black tails, a white rump patch, and no antlers which had fallen off during earlier in the winter and will grow again in the spring enabling males to compete for mates. Males are slightly larger than females, ranging from about 100-325 pounds and shoulder height of about 40 inches. These individuals seemed to be above the median size for the species, possibly due to an abundance of succulent forage provided by the lake and only minimal competition from livestock in the area.
to prevent encounters from happening called "Keep
Me Wild." They emphasize enclosing gardens and picking up fallen fruit, and even recommend certain repellent products. Doing so will also keep their hunters, mountain lions, away from homes. It is also illegal to feed deer as this could diminish their natural fear of humans (from the way the looked at us on the lake, they didn't seem too threatened. Then again, we were on a boat at least 50 feet away). Other management considerations include parasitic diseases and bacterial diseases that can be spread to and from livestock. High density and malnutrition are factors that may predispose populations to infection. Aside from mountain lions, their other greatest predators are sport hunters.
Anderson, Allan & Wallmo, Olof. "Odocoileus hemionus." Mammalian Species 219. The American Society of Mammalogists, 27 Apr. (1984): 1-9. PDF.
California Department of Fish and Game. Keep Me Wild. 2011. Web. 22 Feb. 2012.http://www.dfg.ca.gov/keepmewild/
Misuraca, Michael. "Odocoileus hemionus."Animal Diversity Web. University of Michigan Zoology, 1999. Web. 22 Feb 2012 http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/ Odocoileus_hemionus.html
Note: All photos and videos were taken by the author on the date of the trip unless otherwise noted.
CA DFG Website