Whitetail Does and Fawns
Whitetail Deer Fawn Development
Whitetail does give birth to their fawns usually during May and June, although some of them may birth as late as September,
depending upon their breeding cycle.
Twins are common and triplets are not a rarity and can be seen quite often.
Whitetail fawns usually weigh between 4 and 8 pounds at birth, with the buck fawn usually weighing in at the higher end of the weight scale.
When they are born, the doe will clean up all evidence of their birth and then move them individually to different spots, so if one is found, the other will not be.
Fawns have white spots all over them for camouflaging easily into their environment and have no scent to them for predators to be able to detect. They lay flat and go into a freeze position if they sense danger.
Deer fawn can walk within 15 or 20 minutes of birth, but do not move around a lot during the first 2 weeks of life.
The doe comes to nurse them several times a day and also licks them to stimulate bowel movements. She continues to do this for almost the first month of their lives.
Fawns can be easily approached by humans within their first 3 weeks of age.
Though you should leave them alone and not touch them, a Whitetail doe will not abandon them if they have human scent on them.
At 2 weeks of age, they will start to graze on leaves, grass, twigs and dirt.
Whitetail deer are known as what is a ruminant, which is a mammal that has 4 compartments in their stomach, enabling them to regurgitate partially digested food, which is commonly known as chewing their cud.
The fawn's rumen, which is the first part of the stomach used for chewing their cud, becomes fully developed at about 8 weeks of age, making them able to be weaned.
However, they will continue to nurse for as long as the doe will allow them to.
At about 1 month of age, they will start to follow their mother around and go where she goes.
By the time they reach close to 4 months, their spots will be gone and they will be developing their winter coat, which is more gray in color for the winter, rather than the auburn coloring it has during the summer.
Doe fawns may continue to live and travel with their mother indefinitely, but the buck fawns will be pushed away to go and live on their own.
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