NEWS

Mule deer population rises thanks to good spring moisture

The mule deer population is on the rise as a result of good spring moisture for the past three years.

6/27/2016 2:01:27 PM

Cheyenne - The mule deer population is on the rise as a result of good spring moisture for the past three years. The doe:fawn ratio has shown a favorable increase in the last two years, leading biologists to take notice.

“For mule deer, research has shown we need a ratio of 66 fawns for every 100 does to maintain or increase the population size.  The average number of fawns in key mule deer herds statewide over the past two years has been 75 per 100 does,” said Ian Tator, Wyoming Game and Fish Department statewide terrestrial habitat manager. “This is likely a result of the good moisture we’ve received in the months of April, May and June.”

Early spring moisture impacts wildlife fawn production most significantly. The moisture received during those months contributes to nutritious forage production at a time of year when wildlife need it the most-after a long Wyoming winter. Mule deer emerging from winter with good spring forage can recover necessary fat reserves for fawn rearing. Likewise, shrubs produce nutritious leader growth as a result of spring moisture which will prove to be a vital food source during the subsequent winter for mule deer on transition and winter ranges.  

“In addition to mule deer, pronghorn populations have also benefitted as a result of good moisture,” said Tator. “We’ve been lucky with  the timing of precipitation as it has contributed to the above-average fawn production we’ve seen the last two years.”

Even when it isn’t raining, Game and Fish is working to increase mule deer populations through the Wyoming Mule Deer Initiative. The Initiative works with partners to improve our understanding of limiting factors to mule deer population growth including identification of key habitats necessary to sustain populations and implementation of habitat improvement projects within key mule deer herd units statewide. To learn more about mule deer efforts in Wyoming, visit the Wyoming Mule Deer Initiative website.

Photo by Justin Binfet/WGFD 

 

(Wyoming Game and Fish (307) 777-4600)

- WGFD -


Apply to be a member of the Wyoming CWD working group

Game and Fish seeks wide representation to develop recommendations

 

Continue reading...






Applications open for two women’s outdoor camps

It’s not the typical girls’ weekend, but it could be one of the most memorable.

Continue reading...








Game and Fish Camp Wild summer camp registration open

Kids who like nature and wildlife will have the chance get outside this summer to explore.

Continue reading...






Black bear bait site renewal begins March 1

Black bear bait site renewals begin at 8 a.m. Friday, March 1

Continue reading...




Wyoming Junior Duck Stamp artwork on display in Cheyenne

February is a good time to visit the Wyoming Game and Fish Department Cheyenne Headquarters to see the award-winning work of local youth artists.

Continue reading...




Become a certified AIS inspector

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is offering trainings for members of the public to become a certified Wyoming aquatic invasive species (AIS) inspector.

Continue reading...




Email Newsletter

Email Newsletter Sign Up

Stay up to date on all Wyoming Game and Fish news either by email or text message. Click the link below to get started.

Sign Up Today

SHOP WYOMING GAME & FISH STORE   SHOP NOW!

Conserving Wildlife - Serving People