Late Births, Fawns in Spots

Ridge Runner

AH legend
Mar 23, 2017
Reaction score
Hunting reports
Member of
East Cape, South Africa, Zimbabwe
This started on Mother's and Babies, so now I'm starting this as a new OP to avoid hijacking the Mother's and Babies OP.

How many, please list your state or general hunting area ie I'm in northeast Tennessee, members here on AH that have already started their deer hunting season are still seeing late birth fawns still in full spots?

I have seen at least 12 fawns so far, in Tennessee, still in full, "bright" spots in the last couple of weeks. Our regular statewide deer season started this weekend, 24 September, which is nearly double for one particular area I hunt and seen fawns in spots in other areas I occasionally hunt in.

Either 2 or 3 past deer seasons, take as word of mouth as I don't know either of these 2 hunters met each on 2 sperate occasions, each claimed they had shot does for "freezer meat" and each found fetuses while gutting their deer. Both claims were in Tennessee's archery season around end September first-second week of October.

In talking with a local biologist, the "rut" is generally anytime between late October through early December, however if a doe isn't breed during this timeframe she'll come into heat every [ 6(?) weeks or 26 days, one or the other, or something close to these timeframes] until she is breed.

This is due to buck to doe ratio in a "given" area. Note: "given area" means how many bucks and how does are seen and counted in that particular spot at that particular timeframe be it morning, midday, or afternoon/evening that one time.

IMO no way is this acceptable to get a base line figure of the deer population of a specific area or even a hunting unit.

What I'm curious about is:

How many of you all are still seeing: relatively new born, full spotted, faint spotted, barely out of spots, fawns and how late into your respective deer seasons, ie September through February?

Are you seeing a doe with singles and/or twins and/ or triplets?
I am located in west central Alabama. We had pregnant does on camera in August. We trap for predators and have zero coyotes or bobcats on camera, however we do not have any fawns on camera at this time. I’m staring to become concerned.
Not a hunting area but the local suburban white-tail herd has at least two still-in-spots fawns tottering about, or did as of last week.
I’m in southwest Alabama, we see spotted fawns up until late October and on occasion early November. They have adjusted our seasons accordingly. Bow season starts October 15 but the first 10 days it’s bucks only. They have extended the deer season until 10 February with a limit of 2 deer a day only 1 buck and 1 doe per day with a season limit of 3 bucks with 1 of those having at least 4 points on 1 antler. My preference would restrict antlerless harvest to 1 December to 15 January only and with the current bow season regs. remaining in tack.
We’re located East Texas just south of I-20 almost to Louisiana line. Got fawns at our feeder now with spots in backyard
Speaking of mule deer not necessarily whitetails. I’m in Rocky Mtn west. Normal rut is about Dec1. Gestation is 210 days. Normal fawning is about July1. Late spotted fawns delayed in approx. one month (estrous cycle) increments indicate 1 or 2 things or combination of both. Too low buck to doe ratio and/or excessive disturbance during rut. Survival rate of late, one estrous cycle, fawns is usually lower than those born at normal date. And survival rates much, much lower if two or more estrous cycles missed.
Last edited:
I'm in middle GA, and the fawns are dropping their spots. But seemed like the fawns were born later this year than on previous years.
I saw a doe with a spotted fawn in Gravenhurst, Ontario on September 11th. I thought it was a little late to be having spots, which were still very predominant.
have 3 fawns in full spots on camera. DFW area
We are in Central MN. Fawns seem to be well grown around here. Nature kind of takes care of it's own one way or another. A couple years ago I was able to shoot 3 deer, but only one buck. Shot a 9 point buck first morning of rifle season (early November). Watched a few does that evening but decided i didn't really want to clean another deer that evening. So had a dozen or so does and fawns in the food plot yhe next morning. The biggest doe has two big healthy fawns so let her go to produce again. A young doe with one fawn, thought give her another chance. Then a very fat doe with a nice fawn came out and my plan was take both so shot the doe expecting the fawn to give me a few seconds. But he ran immediately. That doe still had milk even though the fawn was decent size. The fawn came out to the food plot that evening so shot him in the head and did the fillet type job I had learned in Argentina on red stag. Damn that was the best venison ever?

As for spots, if they have spots in November here, very unlikely they will survive. I've seen them occasionally but it's very rare.
I'm in the low country of South Carolina--I have seen spotted fawns as early as May and as late as December. For certain I have seen deer tending scrapes in April during spring turkey season. IF the doe population is really skewed against the bucks, it comes as no surprise that does that are not bred the first time around will be in estrous monthly until they are impregnated. This weekend I was sent a trail cam photo locally of a buck breeding a doe (Sept 14, if I remember correctly from the pic). I saw one with fading spots yesterday while sitting. Carrying capacity and buck to doe ratio have huge impacts at least locally!!!
It’s great when they still have spots. Gives you something to aim at.
Depends on how you view deer. Some view them as pests that need killing or even eliminating. Some view them as common targets while others view them as important integral parts of the ecoscape.

I witnessed a 75-90% loss of a mule deer population over a wide swath of their range over most of a state in the mid 70s to early 80s. From seeing multiple spotted fawns one October to a population crash the following 2-3 years. A situation that has not significantly improved since. Many cervid spp. populations are driven by similar inter-related dynamics. Cervid fawning/calving chronology is also interlinked with predator-prey population dynamics among many other environmental influences.

The late Valerius Geist was probably the world’s number one authority on North American cervid population ecology and dynamics. His work is worth studying for those interested.
Central Wisconsin. Just mentioned to a friend (who whole heartedly agreed) the other day that I can’t remember ever seeing so many small fawns as I do in the “crop” this year. Healthy, no spots, but definitely more later births this year.
I’m in San Antonio, Texas, in an area with greenbelts and neighborhood deer. We usually start seeing newborn fawns around Memorial Day and see our last spots around Labor Day.
I'm in NC - been seeing twins in the pasture. Still in spots and nursing as of early September.

Last edited by a moderator:
Somewhere in Georgetown, TX about 5 minutes ago. And there were others.

Forum statistics

Latest member



Latest profile posts

A.A. wrote on Msprenger!'s profile.
Are you still looking for a 375 H&H?
NRA Life, ASSRA Life, GGCA Life
Sable @ the lodge this morning

Buffalo encounter this morning!

here with available dates for 2024/25

1-13 September 2024
14-31 October 2024
1-7 November 2024
18-24 November 2024

March 2025 is wide open!
12-17 April 2025
24-28 May 2025
15-21 June 2025
7-12 July 2025
22-28 July 2025
13-31 August 2025
15-30 September 2025

October and November 2025 is wide open!