Some Characteristics Of White-Tailed Deer Reproduction In Arkansas

During four years of deer collections from three areas in Arkansas, 550 female reproductive tracts were analyzed. Four hundred and twenty-six tracts collected during fall hunting seasons proved to be of little value. Of 124 does collected by spotlighting and from road kills in spring, 101 were pregnant. Eighty-nine of these were adult does and 12 were fawns. The mean conception date (MCD) of adult does from the northern study area was November 13-three weeks earlier than MCD in the central and southern areas. This was a highly significant difference. The ovulation rate of 108 adult does collected statewide was 1.77 ova per doe. A pregnancy rate of 93% was calculated for 92 adult does collected in spring. The reproductive rate for 108 adult does was 1.66 fetuses per doe. This indicates that 93% of the fertilized eggs implanted. Analysis of variance of each parameter indicated that there were no significant differences between study areas. Of 143 fetuses old enough to be sexed; 59 were male and 84 femalea sex ratio of 42 :58. Fifty-three sets of twins were old enough to sex; 11 were male, 20 female, and 22 of opposite sex. A chi-square test indicated no significant difference between the observed and the expected sex ratio of 50:50.

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