Herd Movements

The typical home range (that area where a deer spends the majority of its life) for desert mule deer varies from 2 to 5 square miles, with bucks having larger home ranges than does. Recent research on mule deer bucks in the Texas Panhandle reported an annual home range of a of about 25 square miles. The size of a deer’s home range is determined in part by the quality of the habitat, i.e., how well the necessary components are interspersed throughout the range. Desert mule deer are not generally considered to be migratory, although there may be occasional transient movements of several miles. Deer also may shift their home ranges in response to the seasonal availability of water, supplemental feed (small grain fields) and/or the presence of mountain lions.