Monday, May 27, 2013

In Search of the Piebalds

Two piebald deer live within a very short range of where some of my cameras are placed and where I work.  

They are masters at avoiding the cameras though.

When I first saw them last year, I thought the two white-colored mammals were goats, but you better believe they were piebald deer.  Today, they were both together on the side of the road near an entrance to my place of work, working their tongues and teeth on a tasty patch of grass.  I halted the car and did a weird little jig to get my cell phone out of my pocket for a picture.  In that time, the deer had put their heads up and trotted off into the green curtain of the forest.

I assume they are not big fans of the local paparazzi, especially that of the camera-trapper kind.

They are actually white-tailed deer but with a coat of white, brown, and tan patches.  A genetic variation causes this coloring and is quite rare in deer.  In fact, these are the only piebald deer that I have ever seen.  

I have learned the term "piebald" for this color variation, but have also heard to them referred to as pinto and calico patterned.

It's time to rethink the location of a trail-cam, place it closer to where I have seen these deer multiple times, and actually get them on camera now.

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