South Dakota Mule Deer Hunting
Mule Deer Hunting in South Dakota 2010
South Dakota features a variety of deer hunting opportunities centered on the East River, West River, and Black Hills deer seasons.
Take a look around at the tools and information on the left to find Season Dates, License and Application Requirements and much more.
The mule deer is a deer whose habitat is in the western half of North America. It gets its name from its large mule-like ears.
Its closest relative is the black-tailed deer (considered by some a subspecies of mule deer). Unlike its cousin, the white-tailed deer, mule deer are generally more associated with the land west of the Missouri River. The most noticeable differences between whitetails and muleys are the color of their tails and configuration of their antlers. The mule deer's tail is black tipped. Mule deer antlers are bifurcated, or "fork" as they grow rather than branching from a single main beam (as with white-tails).
Each year a buck's antlers start to grow in spring and are shed after mating season from mid-January to mid-April. Mule deer bucks have somewhat more prominent ears than females. Instead of running, mule deer move with a bounding leap (stotting) with all four feet coming down together. The mule deer is the largest of the its genus, standing, on the average, 40 to 42 inches at the shoulders and stretching 80 inches or so nose to tail.
An adult buck will weigh from 150 to 300 pounds on the hoof, with does averaging 100 to 175 pounds. The occasional trophy-sized mule deer buck may weigh in around 400 pounds. The Mule Deer does not show marked size variation across its range as does the White-tailed Deer.
If you are ready to hunt Mule deer in South Dakota, or need more information, stop by our Galleries, Forums or Blog to get the latest scoop on the the 2010 South Dakota Mule Deer Hunting Season.
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