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Rocky Mountain Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus)
Mammals Around Las Vegas, Wildlife Around Las Vegas
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)

General Information: Rocky Mountain Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus) are deer of the western mountains. In this widespread subspecies (Nevada to Oklahoma and north into Canada, except not the Pacific coastal region), the rump is mostly tan, and the tail is white with a black tip.

Around Las Vegas, Rocky Mountain mule deer can most easily be seen in the Spring Mountains (Mt. Charleston), but they can be found in all of the higher mountain ranges around southern Nevada from about the Upper Sonoran (Pinyon-Juniper Woodland) life zone up to the Alpine (Alpine Tundra) life zone. Males have antlers that are shed and regrown every year. Mule deer get their name from their over-sized, mule-like ears.

Taxonomy: Order: Artiodactyla (Even-toed Hoofed Mammals); Family: Cervidae (Deer, Elk, Moose, Caribou).

Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Male mule deer during summer (red).

There are 11 subspecies of mule deer. In most cases, the subspecies are difficult to tell apart (except by geography). However, there are obvious differences in the tails of some subspecies: some have black tails, some have white tails, and some have white tails with a black tip.

Technical Description: Height about 3 feet. Antlers (males only) are forked, each fork being equal in size (compare with White-tailed Deer. Coat color tends to be reddish in the spring and gray in the winter. The hooves are in pairs; one pair primarily contacts the ground, and another usually remains slightly off the ground behind the first.

Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Male mule deer during winter (tan).

Breeding: Deer breed in the fall (fall rut) and produce 1-2 young (fawns) in the spring.

Diet: Vegetation; browse on shrubs and twigs.

Range: Occur from Nevada to Oklahoma and north into Canada, except not the Pacific coastal region.

Comments:

Rocky Mountain Mule Deer If you were a tasty leaf on a bush or a little forb, this might be the last face you ever see!
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) Mule deer scat. Typical pile where a deer was spending some time, perhaps lying down chewing its cud.
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) Mule deer scat. Tends to have a nipple on one end and a dimple on the other. Technically they are the same size as bighorn scat, but they look smaller to me.
Rocky Mountain Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus) Mule deer track in the sand. Tracks are heart-shaped with convex sides.
Rocky Mountain Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus)
Female Mule Deer at Red Rock Canyon NCA
Rocky Mountain Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus)
Female Mule Deer at Red Rock Canyon NCA
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule deer in Ruby Marsh, northeastern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Heading for the hills! Mule deer in Ruby Marsh, NE Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pahranagat NWR, southern Nevada
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Zion National Park, southwest Utah
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Zion National Park, southwest Utah
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Zion National Park, southwest Utah
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Zion National Park, southwest Utah
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Zion National Park, southwest Utah
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Zion National Park, southwest Utah
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado; summer pelt
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado; summer pelt
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Malheur NWR, central Oregon
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Malheur NWR, central Oregon
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Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
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Rocky Mountain Mule Deer Rocky Mountain Mule Deer
Rocky Mountain Mule Deer Rocky Mountain Mule Deer
Rocky Mountain Mule Deer Rocky Mountain Mule Deer
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule Deer at Red Rock Canyon NCA © 2011 Bill Raufmann
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule Deer at Red Rock Canyon NCA © 2011 Bill Raufmann
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule Deer at Red Rock Canyon NCA © 2011 Bill Raufmann
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule Deer at Red Rock Canyon NCA © 2011 Bill Raufmann
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule deer antlers: fork and fork again
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule deer antlers: fork and fork again
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule deer track in mud
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule deer track in wet sand
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Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
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Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) more to come ...

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 130316

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