The head of a deer is narrow. Deer have a small nose and mouth. A deer has large eyes at the sides of its head. A male deer is commonly called a buck. In most species of deer the male grows antlers from permanent knobby bump like bones on the deer's skull. Deer loose their antlers each winter. The deer mainly uses these antlers to fight for mates or to mark territory.
60 types of deer live in the world. The largest wild animal of North America is the North American moose, a species of Deer. Moose can grow up to 7 1/2 feet tall and weigh over 1800 pounds. Smallest deer is the Pudu of western South America. The pudu is only about one foot high and weighs an average of 20 pounds. Some deer such as the caribou and moose have large powerful bodies. All deer have long, thin legs. Some deer can jump from 15 to 20 feet. Other deer can run up to 40 miles per hour.
Deer are herbivores and grazers. There diet mainly consists of grass, leaves, bark, twigs, tender sprouts of trees and other plants. They will also eat moss and lichens including mushrooms and other types of fungi. Deer such as the North American Moose will spend hours in swamps eating the roots of plants. Deer do not chew their food much. Like a cow, they have a stomach with four sections. One section is used to store poorly chewed food. Later the food is returned to the mouth and chewed a second time. This is called cud. The food is then swallowed again. This time it goes to another part of the stomach where the vitamins and nutrients can be absorbed.
Deer find a secluded place to bare their young. The young stays where it was born for about 10 days until it can walk well enough to follow its mother. Fawns of a white-tailed deer weigh from 3 1/2 to 6 pounds at birth. A newborn moose calf weighs 25 to 35 pounds. Most species of deer have only one or two young at a time. Deer can live 10 to 20 years in the wild depending on breed, hunting pressure and other factors.
Deer live all over the world. Deer live everywhere from the hot deserts to near the Arctic Circle. They also live in more temperate places such as swamps and woodlands. Deer that live in the mountains migrate to lower elevations in the winter where it is warmer. Deer have a home range area which varies. Some deer such as the caribou travel about 1,000 miles each year.