Thursday, June 18, 2020

Desert Mule Deer

There are seven subspecies of mule deer and I saw one of the subspecies for the first time last Saturday (June 13). I was driving to Corn Springs in the Chuckwalla Mountains of southeastern California and a deer ran across the road and into some thick vegetation. I got one poor photo of it through the windshield of my car. 

The mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) is found throughout most of western North America. The desert mule deer, a subspecies, also known as the burro deer (O. h. eremicus) is found in the lower Colorado River Valley, southeastern California, northwestern Mexico and Arizona. 
Very poor photo of burro deer at Corn Springs. The deer is in the center of the photo, just above the rocks. 
The desert mule deer adapts to desert life by being active at night or early in the morning during warm weather and by eating a wide variety of vegetation. They spend time in the higher elevations during the warm weather and lower elevations during the cooler weather. 

They eat mesquite leaves and beans, fairy duster, jojoba, catclaw, buck bush and other shrubs and grasses. 


  1. With a diet of fairy duster and catclaw, they sound like a magical subspecies.

    1. They sound like a subspecies with an iron gut.