Odocoileus virginianus clavium
This is the smallest species of the white-tailed deer. Adults are 24 - 28" at the shoulder...as pictured.
This species is confined mostly to Big Pine Key in a refuge. Due to development, their habitat has declined in size considerably. Per Wikipedia, "This species feeds on over 150 types of plants, but mangroves (red, white, and black) and thatch palm berries make up the most important part of their diets."
I am posting this now as I have been watching the movement of Hurricane Irma. At the time of this posting, the eye of the storm is over Big Pine Key and the refuge. This deer is an endangered species, and they are living in a low-lying area in the keys (1 to 3 feet above sea level) that will be hit hard by a storm surge of 10 to 15 feet. Pine rockland habitat (found in Big Pine Key) is important, as well. Per Wikipedia...(pine rockland habitat) "is often the only reliable source of fresh drinking water (Key deer can tolerate drinking only mildly brackish water)." The water will be more than brackish from the storm. There is no where for them to go. Hoping the best, and fearing the worst!
Lat: 24.68, Long: -81.36
Spotted on Dec 16, 2016
Submitted on Sep 10, 2017
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