Saturday, January 25, 2014

A motherless fawn

We first noticed her in September, a lone spotted fawn, no mama in sight. We might have seen her before, when she had a mama, but we wouldn't have noticed her among the pairs of does and fawns nibbling their ways through our yard.

She was two or three months old in September, small and young to survive without a family. Whitetail fawns nurse for 8-10 weeks. Had she been weaned before her mama died? How would she know about finding food? And where to hide from the coyotes that howl at night?  

Every morning as I looked out the kitchen window I wondered whether she'd be back or if the night before had been her last.

Perhaps she's the fawn born on our front lawn. She knows our place--the paths and bushes, where we scatter birdseed, the bird baths filled with water.

Her coat is full brown now.  She's still small, maybe will always be small; hardship takes a toll.  But she was born in a good year--it was an acorn-avalanche autumn, more food than all the neighborhood deer combined could eat.

The other morning  I saw her bedding in the buffalo grass near our house when the air was well below freezing.  I'm guessing she thought she was home.

Copyright 2009-2014 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.
Post a Comment