Sunday, November 30, 2008

Gentleman Caller

Baby Doe has a friend today; must be that time of year. The two of them were out in the yard this morning, along with about a hundred Red-winged Blackbirds, when I happened to glance out. She looks a bit quizzical about the whole thing, though a woman of her experience ought to be used to seasonal attention by now. Maybe she's flattered by the attentions of a younger male. Could be she's just bored, not interested in raising yet another pair of twins next summer, however elegant their sire. She knows where this is leading.

He's a handsome fellow, despite the broken antler. Young, I'd say, or perhaps just coming into his prime. I've noticed before that the males seem to have lighter faces and that contrasting forehead, helping identify them even when antlers are lacking. Unlike Whitetailed Deer, our Mule Deer have antlers with an even dichotomous branching pattern—each side splitting into two forks, and so on. In Colorado, we'd call this guy a "5-point" buck I think, counting only one side. (Elsewhere, both antlers count, but with Muleys you only have to multiply by two for the equivalent. I'm not sure, though, whether the little prong at the base counts.)

C'mon, Baby Doe—look at those big brown eyes!

1 comment:

Crafty Green Poet said...

what a handsome fellow, but she's right to take her time....