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Mule Deer Buck

Mule Deer Buck
Photo Information
Copyright: Rick Price (Adanac) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2004-09-16
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon Eos 300D Digital Rebel, Canon 100-400/4.5-5.6L IS
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/400 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Date Submitted: 2007-03-01 7:20
Viewed: 3984
Points: 22
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This Mule Deer Buck was captured in Cypress Hills Provincial Park on a bright sunny day, he looks tired and for good reason because this was taken during the rut and he had several does with him. Notice the ice on his neck I'm not sure how or why it's only on his neck because while I watched him he did nothing that would cause it to be there, any ideas?

Mule deer
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Mammalia

Order: Artiodactyla

Family: Cervidae

Subfamily: Odocoileinae

Genus: Odocoileus

Species: O. hemionus

The mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) is a deer whose habitat is in the western half of North America. It gets its name from its large mule-like ears. Its closest relative is the black-tailed deer. The two species often share natural habitats, and can be mistaken for one another. The most noticeable differences between the two are the color of their tails and their antlers. The mule deer's tail is black tipped. Mule deer antlers "fork" as they grow rather than growing and expanding forward. Each year a buck's antlers start to grow in spring and are shed after mating season from mid-January to mid-April. Mule bucks also tend to grow somewhat larger than their white-tailed counterparts, particularly in cold climates, and have somewhat more prominent ears.

Instead of running, mule deer move with a bounding leap (stotting) with all four feet coming down together.

Adult male mule deer are called bucks, adult females are called does, and young of both sexes are called fawns.
Seasonal behaviors
In addition to movements related to available shelter and food, the breeding cycle is important in understanding deer behavior. The "rut" or mating season usually begins in the fall as does go into estrus for a period of a few days and males become more aggressive, competing for mates. Does may mate with more than one buck and go back into estrus within a month if they do not mate. The gestation period is approximately 190–200 days, with fawns born in the spring, staying with their mothers during the summer and being weaned in the fall after approximately 60–75 days. A buck's antlers fall off during the winter, to grow again in preparation for the next season's rut.

PaulH, jaycee, Tamrock, pvb, cecilia, Shoot_Score, bobair, clnaef has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2007-03-01 7:24]

Hi Rick

It could be that his antlers caught a branch above him as he passed underneath and knocked off some snow onto his back? The mystery deepens..
Anyway, i really like the long shadow along the side of him and the symmetry of his legs. Exposure is good with all that shadow and bright snow too. Great stuff.

Greetings from an incessantly wet UK...


  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-03-01 7:53]

Hello Rick

Very nice details right down to the kick spray of snow.You captured this big fella in a nice casual stroll.Well focused with natural colours,and setting.TFS


  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-03-01 11:09]

Hi Rick,

Wonderful capture of the buck. The details are sharp and clear. This is the kind of deer we have here but I have never seen a male. The females and offsprings wander around but the men are never around.


hi rick!
nice shot on this beauty with
good sharpness and fine pov!
well done!

  • Great 
  • pvb Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 385 W: 16 N: 531] (1981)
  • [2007-03-01 14:49]

Hi Rick,
Great composition and pov. I like the sunlight you had here and the shadows on his back. Good sharpness. Well done
TFS Paula

Superb image, a real beauty.
Well captured...

Rick, just a quick one here
a) I see snow on the upside of the neck and back of this buck...;
b) less clear at first glance, but clearly there, I see
"frozen breath" on the side of the neck < below the ear >.

If as you say we have the rut in progress, then the bugling causes the animal to stretch its nostrils forward... and creating more of a stream area ... try to picture it ;)

I have done a quick WS, to bring out more contrast. I think the icy patches will show up better. What say you?

Great catch by the way! And thanx for the special challenge! Appreciated, Jay.

PS Your "date taken" strikes me as odd... Snow in mid september? And temps low enough to freeze vapour?
In the Cypress Hills?

Hi Rick,
very nice capture.This deer is a very healthy looking fellow and solidly built.Nice to see that rack without velvet too.You have good clarity on this shot and the point of view works well.Jay's workshop is very good as well. Thank you for Mr.Muley. Bob

A nice capture! Very sharp and fine pov. Congrats!

Regards, Peter

Que la nature est belle.Puissanr animal.
Bonne journée.

  • Great 
  • sayat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 280 W: 0 N: 258] (1457)
  • [2007-03-02 14:31]

Nice shot of this magestic creature. Maybe he had a really tough, cold journey to this point...

Hi Rick,
Nice male capture. Good exposition and very sharp picture. I like the snow spray ;o)

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