Deer … and Snow

Winter weather, particularly snow, is the guiding force behind my recreational activities from November to March. We had 8 – 9 inches of snow this past week, 6 inches from the fringe of a winter coastal storm followed by fluffy, lake-effect snow formed over Lake Ontario.

Birdhouse28Nov14#004Ec8x10

The cold, calm weather that accompanied the snow provided ideal walking and stalking conditions. Soft snow underfoot and snow-covered vegetation muffles sounds and conceals movements.

I decided to seize the opportunity and spend some time stalking and observing a small family group of White-tails, deer that are somewhat tolerant of people and apt to feed during the day. Dried, persistent leaves on small trees and shrubs and the occasional apple were the foods of choice.

Doe27Nov14#026E2c8x10

A massive, mature doe; matriarch

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Fawn28Nov14#028E2c5x7

Button-buck fawn (about 5 months old)

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Doe28Nov14#049E2c8x10

Photos by NB Hunter. © All Rights Reserved.

 

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10 thoughts on “Deer … and Snow

  1. Great shots Nick. I love the contrast of the deer against the snow. How wonderful to be able to get that close to them. They don’t appear to be concerned with your presence at all. I wish we received more snow than we typically do here. In the meantime I will enjoy yours through your photos.

    • Thanks. Yes, I’m hooked on the beautiful contrast too and hope to do one more deer/snow post. I’m trying to make the most of the situation because, as the snow deepens and the available food dwindles to woody browse, these deer will move elsewhere and less often; my sightings will be few and far between in another 2-4 weeks. I really want to capture an antlered buck in a wild, snowy setting, and will focus on that now. I’ve tracked two thus far, to within good camera range. One was rutting and crashing through thick brush and evergreens, with no photo ops. The other – leaving the impressive track of a seasoned veteran – had been hunted because he figured me out and left the county, leaving jump tracks so far apart that it was hard to tell which way he was going. Thanks again for sharing your tripod info too – very much appreciated. Also, “over-the-top” with gear is a good thing. I’ll have snow cammo in the near future!

  2. For me living in a temperate climate this is so radical! Stalking in the snow! Love your descriptive terms on the snow conditions too. It makes a wonderful backdrop and those deer show up so handsomely.

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