April 17, 2009
By Scott Bestul
It is mid-April and, despite a string of 60-degree days, I keep looking at weather channels and websites expecting a snowstorm. As a Midwesterner, it’s hard to relax and accept spring when some of the nastiest storms I’ve experienced have come this month. Only last April I hunted turkeys in South Dakota on the heels of a blizzard that dropped a foot of crusty nastiness before I arrived.
Snow-bound deer are highly adaptable, of course. One of their favorite tricks for saving energy is to reserve travel for places where the walking is easy, which is why whitetails often concentrate near food sources and pack down trails that they use like airport runways. Another option is man-made venues…like the snowmobile trail in this picture. Judging from the concentration of deer and the nose-down posture of many animals, it appears they are also finding food (or being fed) along this route.
I am hoping this is the last winter-weary whitetail picture I see for the year. And, more importantly, that no more snow will fall in my neighborhood til next winter. So how’s the weather report in your area? Has the white stuff left your region? Are your deer in good shape and looking for that first green stuff?