Thursday, July 26, 2012


I've been traveling a little ... even found myself down in south Florida again last week.
This has been the summer of south Florida for me ... I don't get there much.
In all my travels, the deer have been with me.
The young buck scootin' across the road in Myakka River State Park is one I was photo stalking in the palm woods to the right.
When he took off running towards the road, I stepped out and waited for his appearance.
Back in June, I went as far south as Fort Lauderdale and hit the Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park on the "backroad" home.
(Remember the Cara Cara post?)

Seeing a meadow lark is a fairly widely spaced event for me. Once in a great while I will see one on a fence post near a local farm or ranch. There were beaucoup ML's at Kissimmee.

It's important to keep your nose clean.
This doe was grazing with a little spike buck, all in velvet, near the Kissimmee campground.

Out in the tall grass areas of the prairie, I surprised (or was surprised by ...) several deer who suddenly popped up out of antler high grass.

These two AWESOME bucks were browsing in tall grass, late in the day ... just before I stumbled upon those cool Cara Caras.
Still in velvet, they seemed pretty chummy, almost like siblings.

Watch out in a few months when the fuzz comes off though.
Suddenly, they will remember what those pointy things on their heads are for.

I also came across a young, spike buck a few days ago in Colt Creek State Park. He is in the video, at the end. We found Colt Creek after a long day of driving home from Sebring ... mostly in the rain.

The socked in, overcast sky and late hour didn't give me the light I needed for a sharp still photo, but the video setting is more light sensitive, so he did make it into the movie.

I love the way he stamps his feet and sniffs while he decides if I am friend or foe or oddly shaped bush.

My last recent deer encounter, which happened yesterday, has no photo or video.

For some reason, instead of taking BEAR out for a walk through the front door, I broke with tradition and we set out through the back door for our walk.

My garden is in the back, as is the old FFA hog pen, a 16' x 16' enclosure of hog panels and fencing.  

Somehow, like blue crabs in a crab trap, the two resident motherless, half grown, but still spotted fawns had wandered into the hog pen through the narrow gate.

When Bear and I came off the back porch, we surprised them.

Normally, this would be a minor deal, they would have lept over the short hog panel fencing and been long gone.

(Bear is on a retractable leash)

The only problem for the fawns was that I had added 5' of wire atop the hog panel to keep deer OUT of that enclosure, so I might garden in there minus ravenous ungulates.

Who knew they would stroll in through a human-sized and partially open gate?

So they went nuts of course ... as did Bear.

Immediately I was in a tug-o-war with 100lb Bear, who is a pretty good boy, but the sight of two deer 50 feet away flinging themselves against a fence, bouncing back down, and reflinging ... well, it was just too much for him.

One deer managed to find the gate as I was trying to turn Bear in the direction of the house, but the other seemed a little more challenged by the situation.

Finally as I got Bearzy back on to the porch, I saw the second deer fly out the gate and into my woods.


Deerly departed.


threecollie said...

Deer are plumb dumb about fence, perhaps not evolved to understand how it works. The will walk right into electric fence, even if it has been in the same place for years and just keep walking rather than back away like a domestic animal will. They keep us busy in the summer, fixing up what they break. Great pics, especially that top one!

cinbad122 said...

I saw a doe and bambi down Millhopper Rd yesterday. I was going to turn around and go back to take a shot but I thought I might scare them (I was in the truck). I never saw a wild bambi!

Pablo said...

I've seen deer like crazy in my Ozark forest this summer. The drought, perhaps?

I also saw a pair of deer just down the street in faraway suburbia the other day.

Dawn said...

That was a very pretty video, especially at the 2:00 min mark. I noticed how the little buck had his tail tucked between his legs as he walked into the woods (like a scared dog). Just observing, I don't know anything about deer.

Anonymous said...

Hi FC,

Nice video. It used to scare me when I saw deer along the road when we came back from Cedar Key at night.


P.S. Is your super-hero costume ready for this weekend? Have fun!!

Island Rider said...

My aka state par! You were in our neck of the woods. Why didn't you call?

R.Powers said...

I guess it's like the wild fish put into an aquarium. Physical boundaries are totally alien to them.

Go you! We saw a super fresh, tiny fawn in an orange grove last week.

... or has the RR steward created just the right habitat for them?

Thanks! For deer, tail down is pretty normal. I think like a lot of park deer, he was only a little concerned about the strange creature standing in the rain trying to photo him.

That road is famous for deer/car interactions!
I am ready, but no cape!

Cathy S,
I thought you were traveling.
It was raining most of that part of the trip and we were just skipping into parks here and there for a looksee as we made the long drive home from Sebring.

Miz S said...

Your run is this weekend? Good luck,and stay hydrated!!

robin andrea said...

The bucks are still in velvet here too. We have a pair that come by often. We call them The Buck Brothers. They're always together. Haven't see any does in a while, and no fawns this year. Not sure what's up. Read an interesting article recently that said the deer population is actually in decline in California. Hard to imagine, but true.

Anonymous said...

I love the deer. I don't get to see them to often in my part of suburbia altho there is a park not too far away they roam thru every now and then. Thanks for posting.

Island Rider said...

Um, yes we might have been away. I absolve you of any guilt I might have imposed!