How The Cold Affects Deer

Deer are resilient creatures.  Specifically whitetail deer have increased in number due to their adaptability to different environments. Overtime, whitetail deer have been able to withstand anything that Mother Nature has thrown at them. This winter Texas has experienced numerous windy, rainy and cold days. This winter deer have been greatly impacted by the uncertain weather that has extended within the Lone Star State.

Regardless of where they live, Whitetail deer reach differently to cold weather.  According to whitetail researcher Charles Alsheimer “deer can bed as much as 90 perfect of the time in winter, and as little as 30 percent of the time during the rut.” In addition cold weather can negatively impact herd health, rutting activity and ultimately a deer’s survival throughout the winter.

As the cold winter months start to approach, deer begin to prepare for the cold times that lie ahead. In the fall deer begin to eat more, adding fat layers around their bodies. This fat that the deer store help carry them through the rut of winter. In addition to adding fat to their bodies, deer shed their “red” summer coats which are lightweight in order to replace them with heavy dark coats. This heavier coats allows the deer to retain body heat and conserve calories expenditure from exposure to the cooler elements.  When winter hits, the metabolism of deer lower. This proves to be beneficial for whitetail deer because a slower metabolism permits the further saving of body energy and reduces the number of calories they burn.

While cold temperatures play a role during winter, windy weather conditions can wreak havoc on deer hers. Several studies have been conducted on wind speed in relation to whitetail observation. Many studies have shown that there is a direct correlation between wind velocity and deer activity. Jon Stone conducted a research in Texas and concluded that the harder the wind blew, the less deer move around.  This proves beneficial for deer hunters and hunting enthusiast who are able to get an easier shot if they chose to embrace the cold weather.

When hunting in the cold weather it is important for hunters to know that deer have a variety of tactics they use during the winter months instinctively to protect themselves. For example, whitetail deer will hid out in dense cover to hide from the bitter cold. Some hunters claim to sit out in deer blinds for hours in the cold waiting for a whitetail to come to view. Although it may take some time whitetail deer eventually must venture out for food and will often present hunters with a great shot at this time.

For all of your hunting needs and questions contact Robert at Cotton Mesa Trophy Whitetail Ranch in Corsicana. In addition to deer hunts, Cotton Mesa offers bison, axis, fallow and hog hunts. Call Robert at (903) 872-6626 to schedule a hunt today.

Get In Touch

Cotton Mesa Trophy Whitetail
9066 FM 3194 Richland, TX 76693

Phone: (903) 654-3416
Fax: (903) 874-4399