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Volume 3January-February, 1934Number 1

Deer in Winter

On February 18, park ranger O. Y. Thompson and I snowshoed to the upper reaches of the Triads where we came upon an encouragingly large number of white-tailed deer. Signs of the animals were encountered frequently, and in places their tracks were everywhere. First we say four deer feeding near a clump of spruces on the south slope of Pemetic Mountain. While we watched them two others joined the group. A few moments later six more animals were scared up on the very summit of one of the Triads. Two more, and finally another herd of six brought the total number seen to 20.

The evergreen foliage of the arbor vitae constitutes a considerable portion of the winter food of these animals, especially when deep snow covers the ground. Ranger Thompson has cut a number of these trees for the deer in areas where the animals are concentrated. He tells me that when two arbor vitaes are felled, one an old and the other a young tree. the deer will invariably defoliate the older tree first.

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