Fawns face many risks, a collection of hazards that may bring their demise before they even know that human hunters are dangerous, too.
Pennsylvania’s latest fawn survival study shows near identical fawn survival rates over the last two decades and corroborates the relatively stable fawn-to-doe ratios collected from annual deer harvests. Consequently, Pennsylvania’s predator impacts do not appear to be changing.
Study also helps department determine how many deer tags to allocate for hunting seasons.
White-tailed deer fawns fare better in farmland than forests — in Pennsylvania and across North America
Researchers modeled fawn survival relative to the percentage of agricultural land cover. The estimated average survival to six months of age was about 41 percent in contiguous forest landscapes with no agriculture. For every 10 percent increase in land area in agriculture, fawn survival increased by almost 5 percent.
Does are adept at hiding their newborns from natural predators, but humans can spoil their efforts.
Spring and perennial food plots can have a giant impact on doe and fawn health during the crucial periods of gestation and lactation.