Ask The Biologist

Hair Club for Deer

Hair Club for Deer

By Bob Humphrey

Whitetails can lose hair for a number of reasons, but this is one odd case.

QUESTION: Reckon y’all can tell me about this bald spot? The deer was taken Dec. 30 in northeast Georgia. — Patrick T.

ANSWER: I have seen deer with similar marks, although not as large or as distinctly hairless. My first thought is that it is the result of a close encounter with something.

Given the size and severity of the spot, it would have to be from repeated encounters with the same object, which could occur if the deer regularly passed under a fence or other solid object. Or it could be from a single encounter with an object sharp enough to literally shave off the hair. As I don’t see any abrasion on the skin, that kind of seems more likely.

Another possibility is the result of a glancing wound, either from a predator, another deer or a bullet. But again, with no visible signs of scarring, I doubt that is the case.

A third possibility is disease or infection, but I would expect more hair loss at other locations on the body if that was the case.

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Copyright 2018 by Buckmasters, Ltd.

Copyright 2017 by Buckmasters, Ltd