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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Deer, Squirrels and Plants...Oh my!!!

We had a full afternoon of Wildlife this afternoon.  We started off our meeting with a presentation on White-tailed deer.  David did a great job of presenting a concise, yet informative, talk on the deer.  Here are a few of the facts we will need for our contest:

White-tailed Deer


Biological Facts

Weaned at 4 months

A fawn is younger than 1 year

A yearling is about 1.5 years

Few deer live beyond 10 years

Can jump a distance of 30 feet and a height of 8 feet

Can run as fast as 35 mph

Main predators are coyotes


  • Bucks and does become sexually mature during their second fallBreeding period occurs between Oct. and Jan.
  • The gestation period averages 200 day.
  • A doe can have from 1 to 3 fawns
  • A buck’s home range is 2-4 times the size of a doe’s. He will leave his home range during mating season but will return/winter

Management Practices
  • Retain existing trees, brush, vines, grasses, and forbes
  • Prescribed burns to enhance quality and quantity of woody forage available to deer
  • Remove livestock
  • Harvest up to 30% of the population
  • Maintain an equal number of bucks and does
  • Overseed established pastures with legumes

Plants will be the same for mule deer (see previous post) and white-tailed deer.
But as someone once said, "We're not through until the fat lady sings," so we had a double dose of biological facts but a triple presentation of information.  Next up was Naomi and Joseph who joined together to present and the two types of squirrel.  Here are some facts about squirrels:
Grey Squirrel

Fox Squirrel

Breed throughout year with peaks in July to September and December to February

Several males mate with one female

Gestation period is 42-45 days

Usually 2-4 are born

Born naked, blind, and helpless

Eyes open:                   5 weeks

Start climbing:         7-8 weeks

Venture to ground:  10 weeks

Weaned:                    12 weeks

Reach maturity:  10-11 months
Prefers open upland forest of mixed trees        Prefers dense hammocks along streams
Range up to 40 acres                                               Range up to 20 acres
Average range is 10 acres                                       Average range is 8 acres
Minimum range is 2 acres                                      Minimum range is 2 acres

Hardwoods must be 40 years old to provide den cavity.  If not available, use nest boxes.
Prescribe burn to increase heart rot in hardwoods if timber value is not objective.
Leave at least 10-15% of area in preferred hardwoods.  Hardwoods must be 25 years old for acorn production.
Leave streamside management zones.
Plant grape & rattan.
Plant corn, peanuts, & milo next to wooded area.
Remove livestock
Plants for our contest related to squirrels:
Black Cherry
Post oak
Red maple
Southern red oak
Water oak
White oak
This post is already so long!!!  Just too much to cram I will let you know about the plants we discovered on our property related to our contest.  It amazing!!!

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