Whitetail Deer Mating

Whitetail Doe Breeding Cycles Explained

When it comes to the Whitetail Deer, their mating cycles are a bit different than many other types of animals.

The Whitetail doe can have many breeding cycles, rather than just one, during the breeding season.

whitetail deer mating, buck staying close to a doe in heat

For example, when a dog goes into heat, but pregnancy does not occur, their breeding cycle would not come around again until 6 to 10 months later.

Does are different in that they are polyestrus.

This means that if she is not bred, or does not become pregnant during her first cycle, she will cycle again in about 28 days.

She may do this several times during the season, and can cycle 5 or more times in a calendar year.

Estrus is the timing in which the doe will allow a buck to breed her. This usually only lasts for about 24 hours, although a buck may follow her around for several days waiting for the correct timing.

Does leave a scent that allows the buck to know when she is ready to mate.

The older and best does are bred first. First year doe fawns will usually mate, but their breeding cycle generally starts about a month later than the older does.

Whitetail deer breeding usually occurs from October through December, and they have close to a 7 month gestation period.

Dominant bucks will mate with several different does throughout the season.

Some buck fawns may mate their first year, but usually they breed after their second year.

The whitetail deer mating season is what is referred to as the rut.

Hunters love the rut as this can be a great opportunity to shoot a trophy buck since the bucks are not as cautious as they normally would be, as they have other matters on their minds!



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