Scientific name:

Dama dama 

 

What makes it special:
The antlers shade annually in the end period of the winter season. The antlers have a velvet appearance and feel, which makes them a desired trophy for many hunters.

 

Recommended caliber:

Being rather a small animal, a 270 caliber rifle is deemed sufficient.

Fallow deer hunting - A desired trophy

The fallow deer is divided into four subspecies, which is the common fallow deer, that has a general chestnut colored coat with white spotting’s and a distinctive patch on its tail. The Menil fallow deer, that also have a chestnut or darker brown coat, but without a patch on its tail. The Melanistic fallow deer is very dark, either having a grayish/brownish appearance or a completely black coloring. And finally the leucistic fallow deer, which is white and has dark eyes, however these are very rare.

 

Hunting method

The best period for hunting the fallow deer is during the rut season. Hunters can use an estrus soaked rug to attract the buck to a higher advantaged hiding place. When spotted, a hunter has a few minutes to take the shot. A fallow deer can run up to a speed of 48km/hr and can jump up to 1.75 meters high and 5 meters in length, all from a standing position. As it has a great sense of smell, staying away from wind paths and shying from the use of cologne detergents is recommended. When on ground level, crawling towards the fallow deer until you get close is a good idea. As their appearance offers great camouflage, the fallow deer is difficult to spot, however it calls out during the rut period and it can be located this way.

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Know the animal

Appearance

The fallow deer is a medium sized and slender deer. Its coloration is generally chestnut brown with white spots that are most visible during the winter and in the summer the deer darkens. At birth the fallow deer is creamy white, which then darkens over time. Only the male deer has antlers, which take the shape of a large spoon. The doe has no antlers, but instead has large sharp pointed ears. The face of the fallow deer is long, with dark areas visible around the nose and eyes. It has a relatively short tail, which is brown on the top and white at the underside.

 

Habitat

It prefers living in mixed woodland and open grassland areas, where it can camouflage comfortably from its predators.

 

Diet

They are grazers and their diet consists of the lower parts of trees, shrubs and grass.

 

Predators
Being a rather small animal the fallow deer has numerous predators, they include; lions, cheetahs and hyenas.

 

Life cycle

The gestation period of the fallow deer is eight months, after which a single fawn is born. The females sexually mature at the age of one, while males mature at the age of two. The life span of a fallow deer in the wild is averaged at eight years.

 

Behavior

The bucks and does usually lives separately all year around, with the exception of the rutting season. Fawns live with their mothers until the age of one, after which they are evicted to form their own bachelor groupings. The fallow takes on the characteristics of a nocturnal animal, feeding at dusk and dawn and resting throughout the rest of the day. When sensing danger, the fallow deer develops a stiff upright stance and walks around with its neck extended and tail elevated. They form hierarchy groupings during the rutting season and they become extremely excited and territorial. If challenged, the bucks use their antlers to fight for their mating rights. After birth the fawns are left in long tall grass, where they hide for a minimum of six weeks while their mother occasionally returns to nurse them.

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Animal Facts

Weight
Male: the average weight is 90 kg.

Female: the average weight is 55 kg.

 

Height

Male: 130 to 160 cm.

Female: 80 to 110 cm.

 

Habitat

Mixed woodlands and open grasslands

 

Diet

Their diet consists of the lower parts of trees, shrubs and grass

 

Predators

Its predators include; lions, cheetahs, hyenas, wolves, lynx and bears

 

Life cycle

The life span of a fallow deer in the wild is averaged at 8 years

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