High: 81° FThe caninaturalist first spied the two fawns this morning. Usually, Mouse and Leila Tov lay claim to the open kitchen window, but today the sisters were too busy sunbathing in my office. That was good news for me and Ari, when a slowly moving blur of red caught our attention.
Low: 60° F
Conditions: Partly cloudy this afternoon with a chance of thunderstorms developing this evening.
The two paused just long enough to browse in my overgrown flower garden before disappearing back into the woods. We’re guessing that these fawns are about two months old. We didn’t see Mom, but given their young age, she must have been nearby.
Even Ari, who doesn’t think twice about yodeling at most deer in our yard, seemed to understand that these two kids needed a little extra consideration, so she stood quietly by my side and behind the window screen. We stood as still as we could so that the fawns wouldn't see us. That means our pictures turned our pretty blurry, but at least we didn’t startle the fawns.
The summer Greg and I moved into this house, we watched a pair of fawns grow up together.
That was five years ago, and we’ve had several summers marked by twins. This is not an uncommon occurrence among white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus)—in fact, nearly 50% of all spring deliveries result in the birth of two fawns. Still, we can’t help but wonder if these twins have some older siblings roaming these woods. Life expectancies for white-tailed deer can be as high as 16 years, but more normal ranges are about 4-8 years, due largely to hunting pressures. That means these generations might all share the same mom, if she's clever enough to evade hunters.
That’s an appealing idea, and one that we’ll mull over as we wait for them to wander across our yard again soon.