Birth time | Food | Antlers

It's birth TIME

The does are impregnated during the preceding autumn and, after an 8-1/2 month gestation period (240 days), the baby is delivered the following June.

The beginnings of a deer's life is seldom observed. The doe stays in hiding during the delivery of the fawn. The young fawn is born head first. Its mother cuts the umbilical cord, tears open and eat the sac which still surrounds the fawn. Then comes a long cleaning session which will create a bound between the fawn and its mother. The fawn will quickly make its first attempts to stand up and finally will nurse for the first time!

A fawn will stay on its feet only half an hour after its birth. It will weigh approximately 7 kg. When it reaches adulthood in the fifth years, it will weigh between 120 and 250 kg for a male and 3 times less for a female. The life expectancy is between 15 and 20 years.

Young fawns stay alone during the first days lying motionless. The mother only comes for it to suckle. During this time, a human should not get close to it as the doe may feel threatened and abandon the fawn... This isolation is an indication of its security. By this way, predators cannot locate it (fox, lynx...). As soon as it is strong enough to stand on its legs, it will join the herd with its mother.

Young fawn have a characteristic coat which is dappled. It will stay with its mother in the herd and recognize her thanks to its unique smell. The male never play a part in its education : the doe will do it alone.

The young are called "fawn" until 6 months of age. Between 6 months and 1 year, it's a "here". From one year, it's a "daguet". Afterwards, it is classified according to its antlers. The first time it grows them, it is called a "first head", next year it's a "second head", etc. Then comes the phase where it is named "ten body youngly" and ends spectacularly with the "great ten-body" or "royal".

daguet second head third head
2nd year
3td year
second head
4th year
third head
fourth head ten body
5th year
fourth head
6th year
ten body


Their main food source are buds and youngs growths.

Deer are vegetarians. Like all ruminants, they chew their food twice. To have more details on this, please go to "Food" chapter

Antlers development

Only males grow antlers.

Once this growth process begins, it occurs seasonaly. The antlers fal off during winter and grow again very quickly in springtime. This is a continuous cycle the rest of the male's life. The antlers are covered with velvet and are soft. This velvet coating is, in fact, a sensitive skin layer which circulates blood to the antlers.

deer in velvet.