The Effect of Seasonal Change on the Group Size, Group Composition, and Activity Budget of White-Tailed Deer, Odocoileus virginianus
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Citation:The Ohio Journal of Science. v95, n5 (December, 1995), 321-324
A free-ranging population of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) located at the Miami University Ecology Research Center near Oxford, OH, was examined from October 1993 to February 1994 to determine seasonal changes in group size, group composition (number of males, females, and offspring), and behavior (feeding, locomotion, alert, and other behaviors). Observations took place at dusk in open pasture from a deer blind. Data were collected utilizing both scan samples and 60 second focal animal samples recorded on video. A significant increase in group size was found from fall to winter. No difference in group composition was found between seasons. Seasonal differences in behavior were found for all age/sex classes with an increase in feeding and a decrease in locomotion during the winter.
Author Institution: Department of Zoology, Miami University
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