Odocoileus virginianus

| 10 Comments

Photograph by Louis Shackleton.

ShackletonLeucisticFawn-2.jpg

Odocoileus virginianusleucistic piebald white-tailed deer, Kiptopeke State Park, Cape Charles, Va., 11 October, 2013. Mr. Shackleton adds, “I was up there for four days for fall bird migration, but constant rain meant that this was the only shot of note for the entire trip.”

10 Comments

Camouflage. You’re doing it wrong.

Glen Davidson

https://me.yahoo.com/a/JxVN0eQFqtmg[…]X_Zhn8#57cad said:

Camouflage. You’re doing it wrong.

Glen Davidson

You know, I wonder. Would a predator seeing this critter, including a human hunter, perhaps not pause for a bit, for a double-take, long enough to wonder what the hell he was seeing and if he could trust his eyes? And might that not give the deer a couple of extra seconds to bolt? I’m suggesting it might be a good camouflage strategy for a few rare deer to have anomalous coloring so that at first glance they don’t look like deer. But it would have to remain a rare phenomenon or it would lose its startle effect. Could this be a beneficial mutation that would cease to be beneficial if it became common?

First time I’ve seen a deer with this color!

I took some pictures of one last November while deer hunting in Michigan. The one I saw was a 1st year male, too small to shoot. The coloring is caused by an inherited “defective” gene. Reasons why they are rare is not limited to being a trophy or camouflage. The “defect” can also cause short legs, internal organ problems, scoliosis, an overbite and a curved nose.

MememicBottleneck said:

I took some pictures of one last November while deer hunting in Michigan. The one I saw was a 1st year male, too small to shoot. The coloring is caused by an inherited “defective” gene. Reasons why they are rare is not limited to being a trophy or camouflage. The “defect” can also cause short legs, internal organ problems, scoliosis, an overbite and a curved nose.

Sssh. Don’t tell that lot over at Unthinkingly Denyse. They’ll want to use it as proof that all mutations are deleterious.

I have not seen such animal yet. Its a beautiful deer. I think its so rare. Does anyone know how many of this deer exist on the world currently? In which countries they live?

White-tailed deer are native to the New World and range over both continents.

What you’re seeing is a rare mutation (genetic, I assume), not a piebald species of deer.

Question: Is it genetic, and is it heritable?

Just Bob said:

What you’re seeing is a rare mutation (genetic, I assume), not a piebald species of deer.

Question: Is it genetic, and is it heritable?

I believe the answer to your question is yes, yes.

This looks more like the autoimmune disease vitiligo where the immune system attacks the melanocytes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitiligo

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Young published on October 28, 2013 12:00 PM.

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