How Long is a Deer Pregnant?
When it comes to the gestation period of deer, there are some things you need to know. And that’s why today, we are going to have a quick run-down of these important facts which include, things you need to know about deer gestation, the mating period, how long a doe stays pregnant, and when is the ideal time to go deer hunting.
If you’ve already figured all these facts out, then, good for you. But if you haven’t, then get your minds ready, as we dive straight into these facts.
Once a doe gets pregnant, they traditionally give birth at about 180 to 200 days. It all varies depending on the species. However, white-tail deer are usually pregnant for 201 days on average. Initially, the doe (female deer) would give birth to one fawn (baby deer). After the doe’s first conception, she would start giving birth to two (in some cases three to four) fawns in the following years.
The point is that as a hunter who specializes in hunting deer, there are some things you need to know about their gestation period because that will affect their movement and availability in the forest. So, let’s look at some of these key points.
THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT DEER GESTATION
Before the gestation period of a deer, there is often a breeding season where every doe (female deer) prepares for pregnancy, and the bucks (male deer) begin to show themselves more for mating purposes.
And this season, which is often known as the rut, or mating season for deer, is always the busiest period because both the bucks and does will start going out to out mingle with each other.
And mostly, a lot of does are always out during these periods to prepare for their pregnancy, more than the bucks. So, having a knowledge of the length period of the rut (and when it happens), will help you know the best time to go deer hunting.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE RUT PERIOD
During the rut period, many young does (those under a year old and who are yet to be pregnant) come out, to enjoy their best time of the year.
This usually happens seven months after the doe’s birth. However, the rut date varies depending on where your location is, as some seasons would be later than others. This is primarily because deer avoid cold weathers.
Thus, based on the weather condition, and how high temperature is, you can be sure to find some deer around. When the temperature is low, there are little chances of you seeing any deer in the forest.
HOW LONG DOES A DEER STAY PREGNANT?
Once a doe does get pregnant, they normally give birth at about 180 to 200 days. It all varies depending on the species of Deer. However, the Common white-tail deer are usually pregnant for 201 days on average.
Normally, the doe (female deer) would give birth to one fawn (baby deer). After the doe’s first conception, she would start giving birth to two (in some cases three to four) fawns in the following years.
So, before you go deer hunting (especially after the rut), you will need to be certain that you know the governmental rules and regulations of your state when hunting. Why?
Because some governmental rules and legal legislations, often prohibit the hunting of pregnant does, that will only lead to the reduction in the number of deer, thus lead to their extinction in that area if it keeps happening.
Also, you need to be certain because it’s quite difficult to judge if a doe is pregnant by looking at her size. Unlike cows and horses, you can barely tell a pregnant doe.
However, if you want to be able to know the difference between a free and pregnant doe, then I recommend you to hunt for bucks until you get to know their difference in physique, especially if hunting for a pregnant doe is not allowed in your area.
WHEN IS THE RIGHT TIME TO GO DEER HUNTING?
Like I said earlier, the rut season is the best time to go deer hunting, as that is the time you will find young doe who are yet pregnant, and bucks, roaming around looking for an adequate partner to mate with.
In the north, it often happens during the fall season, right before the winter period comes. In other words, it always occurs from October down to December.
And as I said earlier that it varies depending on the location, in South America, white-tail deer don’t mate until January down to February. And a South America doe would then give birth to fawns between the months of May and June, making summertime a lazy season for deer hunters, as the animals aren’t usually out this period.
So, it would be wise for you as a hunter to start hunting from October to February, depending on where you are from, and also to avoid taking any chances.
Again, if you’re still not sure about when is the right time to go deer hunting, perhaps the date doesn’t seem to correspond with the availability of deer in your area, then you can Google around on the internet, and make inquiries from websites that deal specifically on deer hunting in America. Ask them about the time deer often goes out in your area.
Still, there is no point deer hunting when the weather is ice cold, or is too harsh, as there is every chance you won’t see any deer around.
Plus, going out under such weather conditions isn’t safe for you as a hunter either, as you could come in contact with other dangerous animals that thrive in cold weather like the Black bears, Grizzly Bears, wolves and so on. So, tread carefully!
In a nutshell, the gestation period of a deer is often between 180 to 200 days depending on the breed. And that is only possible, after they must have mated during the rut period where they roam about looking for the right partner to have intercourse with, for reproduction purposes.
And if you’re hunter who is probably planning to go deer hunting, then there are some important things you need to consider like the gestation period because that greatly impacts the availability of deer.
Gestation Table for Farm Animals
|Farm Animals||Days of Gestation||Lifespan - Years|
Plus, you need to know when they are often out in your area, coupled with a knowledge of your government’s legislation on deer hunting; like if you’re allowed to hunt pregnant does or not. All these combined will help you have a seamless deer hunting experience!