White-Tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus)

Origin: North and South America – as far north as Canada, as south as Peru, and everywhere in between
Sighted at: Emma Long Metropolitan Park, Austin, TX

Finally, a wild deer to add to the collection! Deer are commonplace in Austin, especially around Hill Country, where I live – it’s not at all rare to see wild deer just tromping around in the front yards of suburban homes. I thought for sure that I’d see one and have a snapshot ready to go when I started this website, but sure enough, they all started hiding on launch day. This one finally poked its head out of whereever it’s been holed up!

I spotted it on the way to a nature trail where Pullo and I were going to get some mid-morning exercise. Pullo had never seen a deer before, and so was utterly perplexed as to how to react. He was growling and whining all at once, unsure of whether to go for the throat or try to become the deer’s new best friend. The deer lost patience and wandered off before my pup could make up his mind.

Although the name of the deer suggests that its entire tail would be noticeably white, the white color is actually only present on the underside of the tail. The deer will lift its tail up when it feels threatened!