my deer arrived and holy shit he’s huge. the tracking page said the package weighed 12lbs which seemed strangely heavy since my blacktail is only 3lbs. i thought there was no way he was that much heavier but nope, he’s actually 12lbs. from nose to tip of tail he’s ~86″, while my blacktail is ~62″
once i get his ears right-side out i’ll take nice outdoor pictures of him
A black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus sitkensis) munches on fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium) off of the coast of British Columbia. Black-tailed deer are a smaller subspecies of the more easily recognized mule deer. They are distinguished by their black-topped tails, diminutive size, and smaller metatarsal glands.
A study of blacktail deer antlers. First is a doe on bottom left (no antlers), then a button buck, (male with stubs but no antlers yet/antlers shed,) a six-point buck, a strange deer with weird antlers (testosterone disorder?), and a yearling buck who had lost one antler, but not the other. Then a random shed antler.
As a hunter, I believe that one of the most important aspects of hunting is being okay with leaving the woods empty-handed. I didn’t shoot a deer this morning, but I did see five does and two bucks - one spike buck that wasn’t legal to shoot, and a perfect, mature, heavily-bodied four-pointer with a nice wide spread. But he was standing on a gravel road, and was too far for me to take a decent shot at with my Winchester. The fork-horned buck slipped away into the trees with exuberant confidence and was gone.
I have no problem leaving the woods empty-handed. As much as I want the meat, and the hide, and the bones that a deer kill will provide for me, I don’t ever want the hunt to be a negative or stress-inducing notion for me.
I enjoyed watching the sunrise, shared the company of an enormous great-horned owl, listened to a pair of king fishers quarrel in the marsh, and got to watch some beautiful deer today. Perhaps tomorrow I will have better luck. But if not, that’s okay, too.