The Suitcase Lady


April 17, 2018, 10:16 pm

Six deer came to dinner the other night. We had just started to eat our meal, when we saw them silently slipping out from the trees and congregating at our bird feeders. After the birds have been feasting all day, plenty of leftovers are on the ground to second harvest. And, coincidentally, our “bird table” covered with cracked corn is just the right height for a hoofed, browsing mammal.

We have deer visitors all year long, but this group was feisty, a word rarely used to describe deer behavior. Usually these lovely creatures are bundles of nerves on high alert for any loud sounds or motions. Instantly ready to bolt, they raise their 14 inch long white tails to signal danger. Prey animals do not lead laid back lives.

Since antlers haven’t yet sprouted, the sex of the herd members couldn’t be determined. What was obvious was some strange deer behavior. Various deer would rear up in front of one another. Some would even poke another deer’s back with their hooves.  We were puzzled as to what all this dancing and posturing was about.

When in doubt, consult the oracle. A google search supplied the answer. Deer herds, which come in male or female varieties, display these behaviors when members are jockeying for dominance. It’s a frequent springtime occurrence indulged in by both bucks and does.

Called by many names;  hierarchy, pecking order, station, caste, place, position, standing or rank, the creatures of the world tend to group themselves. We do, too, for better or worse.


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