oh deer

Look at this little guy.


Found yesterday morning at the edge of my yard. I was out hanging the bird feeders (still not taking any chances leaving them out at night with the bears around) and spotted the neighbor's big white cat up near the crabapple tree. Then I saw it leap in the air, heard a scream, and saw a flash of brown and spots and flailing legs.

I ran up there, mostly to chase the cat away (what cat tries to attack a deer?), but also to see what was going on. I thought the fawn had climbed the bank and that's where I looked first. No fawn but mom was pretty upset to see me and did some snorting and stomping around. Of course, I backed off, not wanting to make the situation any worse than it was already.

So I walked around the other way, still not seeing anything, and then I looked down. And there it was in the tall grass, curled into a ball, and trying to be as inconspicuous as possible. When I first climbed the bank I was so close to it that I almost stepped on it. That's how well-hidden it was.

The photo here was taken later in the afternoon, and when I checked about 7:30 pm, it was still there. I did a little research online about deer and this is pretty typical behavior. Mom hides the baby during the day, then walks away to divert attention from it. She'll stay in the general area in case of trouble, but you won't see either one unless you look very carefully.

I haven't checked yet this morning and don't know if they've taken up residence in my yard or for how long. I love that they consider it a safe haven but wonder if I'll be able to mow the grass any time soon. Such gorgeous animals (it has the sweetest little ears) but also very destructive—they're voracious eaters of fruit trees, vegetable gardens, and perennials, all of which we have in abundance.


Unknown said...

That is so 'en-deering'. We leave the lower corner of our yard as a wildflower/naturalized patch...no mowing, overgrown. We have red winged blackbirds(around here they're losing their ground nest areas), salamanders, hum-
mingbirds, Deer, Hawks-falcons-owls visit, rabbits and other little critters, grey and red fox, coyote (recent neighbors). We're only 20 miles from downtown Cincinnati. If you want a natural spray to keep deer, rabbits, etc off the produce and flowers try a strong tea of chewing tobacco and dishsoap with water and spray on botanicals. The tobacco (nicotine) tastes bad and causes coughing. The soap tastes bad and causes diarrhea after a while they'll learn to leave your stuff alone.
Be sure to wash produce before using though.

Marcie Hart - A Work Of Hart said...

What a beautiful sight to behold. You are so Lucky to witness such a precious little thing. ;-)

janet said...

Melody, it sounds like we have similar habitats since I have most of the creatures you mention. I've noticed that we have tons of red winged blackbirds at our feeders this year. We haven't before so I knew they were being pushed out of somewhere.

Sidney said...

I have such a love/hate relationship with the deer in my neck of the woods. They're beautiful creatures. I revere them as part of the grand scheme of things. But they treat my yard like it's a brunch being held in their honor. My poor roses. The tulips. The tender little green shoots of spring things. *sigh*

Anne said...

Oh wow - what a sweet sight, you're so lucky! All I get is seagulls - lol!

Anna said...

Amazing that you got a picture! I never knew they curled in a ball to hide. We had a beautiful mother deer last summer; got to see her with her tiny fawn several times. (Once with a bear passing by minutes later - I'm in the Berkshires, MA). The white speckles on the fawns are so cute. I hope to see some deer again soon.

manila realty said...

Your very LUCKY!