Tag Archives: Bambi

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Bambi: “Look how I’ve grown”

In early June this year during a walk on the edge of Exmoor I was thrilled to stumble across a newly born deer calf lying up concealed among nettles and brambles. Most deer calves hide up quietly on their own for much of the day during the first few weeks of life, and the mother returns only briefly a few times each day to suckle them.

One week old red deer calf hiding.

One week old red deer calf hiding.

Newly born calves even of our largest UK species – red deer – measure barely fifty centimetres tip to tail, and their reddish brown coat flecked with small white spots provides perfect camouflage among the woodland vegetation.

Photographing young calves in the wild without disturbing them becomes easier in late summer when they start to follow their mothers and join the rest of the herd.  Having had little chance to observe calves again until now – the first week in September – it is quite staggering to see how much they have grown even though most are still barely 12 weeks old.

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“Barely three months old, but I’m already able to look over mum’s shoulder”.

“My legs are getting so long now I have to kneel down to suckle”.

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“With my legs growing faster than my neck, grazing too is easier kneeling down”.

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“The other calves say I have a face just like my mum!”

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“Time for a rest …..

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… before joining the herd to eat my greens”.

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See below for a video clip from earlier this summer when calves were just 3 – 4 weeks old :

 


 

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