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In this study we monitored the daily activity patterns of individually penned female white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) during the breeding season. Level of activity (pacing) was determined via traffic counters and an event recorder. Mating date of 10 does tested in 1971 and 1972 was correctly predicted from the sharp rise in movements noted the night before they bred, or 2 nights before in 3 deer. On the average, does were 28 times more active at this time compared to similar times during the previous week. Hence, the marked change in activity manifested by does in proestrus provides a simple, reliable means of conducting penned breeding trials, whether for the purpose of elucidating the reproductive characteristics of deer or for producing fawns for experimental purposes.
The Journal of Wildlife Management © 1975 Wiley