How Weather Changes Affect Deer Behavior


Every seasoned hunter knows that weather changes can greatly 
affect the whitetail deer, which is why they plan their hunting
 tactics in harmony with the weather. The temperature
 can greatly influence how the deer moves and acts. Normally, 
during warm summer weather,a whitetail deer eats during daylight 
and they eat again after the sun goes down. For most of
 their time, they choose to stay on shady and cool areas like 
conifer stands, dense hardwood, 
shrub tickets, wooded stream corridors and wetlands that have 

On the other hand, when the temperature increases and the winter 
season starts to peak, the deer behaves just like it will during summer.
 Even though the weather is cold, they can withstand the temperature 
thanks to their heavy coat. But once the 
temperature drops down to 0°F, the whitetail deer goes to places where the sun shines. 
During such weather, a deer feeds between mornings to mid-afternoon. A deer must eat 
lots of food during cold temperatures 
because digesting the food provides heat for their body. 

The feeding period of a deer is longer during the cold weather. This period normally takes all 
day or all night. As they move and look for food, they produce heat within their bodies.
 Extreme weather can alter the normal behavior of a whitetail deer. In Northern forests, whitetail 
deer basically come together in areas known as deer yards whenever they are faced with a
 period of deep snow. A good deer yard helps protect the deer from different harmful elements. 
The yard also gives good winter foods for the deer.

A deer basically moves the most when winds are at 10Mph or less. This is because during 
gusty winds, a deer is unable to hear or smell well to detect danger around him and his 
environment. This is why during strong winds, a deer is on high alert even while bedded. 
Throughout the winter season, whitetail deer prefer to linger on areas that are sheltered.
 Examples of these areas are thick pine plantations, wooded gullies 
and cattail swaps. Sometimes, the deer moves to areas where it can see from long distance.

        During snow, sleet or rain, a deer still remains active. In these weather conditions, 
the deer frequently eats food at open locations. With the help of heavy precipitation, the 
protection for deer is dense. 
When the rain or snow pours, the deer prefer to hide behind trees and thick conifers for they 
offer more shields.

        Whitetail deer have an unmatched skill for sensing approaching changes in the 
weather. As a matter of fact, hours before the occurrence of a strong storm, the whitetail deer 
can predict that a stormwill be coming. Once they sense the bad weather they eat food as much 
as they can and leave their current spot for another spot where the weather is warmer. They stay 
under protection until the storm or any other severe 
weather condition subsides. Soon after the bad weather passes, they can start moving again to a 
better spot.

Having said all this, it is evident that weather can greatly affect the whitetail deer’s movement. 
So for deer hunters out there, the weather is a consideration. By knowing the weather and how
 a deer reacts to it, you can get your buck easily while it is out in the open.

Tags: , , , , ,

6 Responses to "How Weather Changes Affect Deer Behavior"