Deer Predators

Links below to research and news about these major predators of deer.  Population and other information for each state (use drop down menu above "By State")  is near the bottom of the right column.

  Coyotes    Lions    Wolves    Bears    Bobcats    Pythons    Hunters

“Predators don’t control prey. The prey control the predators.”  Dr. James. C Kroll

What's Left To Learn After 40 Years Of Deer Research? April 27, 2023. Dr. James C. Kroll, North American Whitetail

...  There is a critical need for research on how to manage both deer and predators; and so far that need has not been satisfied... 

Multi-predator Systems


Predation risk drives long‐term shifts in migratory behaviour and demography in a large herbivore population - Journal of Animal Ecology, 2023

... we use a nearly 20-year record of individual-based monitoring of a large

herbivore, elk (Cervus canadensis) ... in and adjacent to a large protected area in Banff National Park (BNP), Canada... Shifts were inconsistent with exposure to the bottom-up benefits of migration. Instead, exposure to landscape gradients in predation risk caused by exploitation outside the protected area

drove migratory shifts...

White‐tailed deer exploit temporal refuge from multi‐predator and human risks on roads - Ecology and Evolution, 2022

... . Deer nursery groups (i.e., ≥1 fawn present) were more diurnal than adult deer without fawns, causing fawns to have 24–38% less overlap with carnivores and 39% greater overlap with humans.  Supporting our hypothesis, deer nursery groups appeared to optimize diel activity to minimize combined mortality risk. Temporal refuge for fawns was likely the result of  carnivores avoiding humans, simplifying diel risk of five species into a trade-off between diurnal humans and nocturnal carnivores. Functional redundancy among multiple predators with shared behaviors may partially explain why white-tailed deer fawn predation rates are often similar among single- and multi-predator systems ...

Survival, cause‐specific mortality, and population growth of white‐tailed deer in western Virginia  - The Journal of Wildlife Management, 2023

... . In the central Appalachian Mountains, deer are part of a largely forested ecosystem that supports 3 carnivore species thought to be capable of influencing white-tailed deer recruitment: black bears (Urus americanus), coyotes (Canis latrans), and bobcats (Lynx rufus). Yet little is known about predation, how other environmental factors influence recruitment, or the importance of neonate survival to white-tailed deer population performance in the region ... While predation, largely influenced by black bears, was the leading cause of neonate mortality and contributed to low neonate survival, we observed little evidence of population decline, and suggest there is opportunity for a modest increase in harvest of female deer...