Deer and Their Spots

Deer and Their Spots

A quick educational article on how deer mature

I just wanted to write this quick article on White-Tailed Deer and how they mature.


Disney, naturally, takes a great deal of 'creative license' when making movies. Unfortunately, this license often misleads kids on how animals in nature really grow, live and mature.


In this article, I'll be highlighting the general span a fawn retains its spots, the length of time a fawn needs to stay with its mother, and the natural breeding age of white-tailed deer.



In the Disney films, Bambi is unable to fend for himself after his mother is shot by hunters.



Does give birth to 1–3 spotted fawns in mid to late spring, generally in May or June. They are weaned after 8–10 weeks. Males will leave their mothers after a year and females leave after two.



** Bambi's mother was killed in mid-late winter.

** Bambi was at least 6-7 months old at the time, give or take.

** He would have been weaned and eating vegetation on his own.

** The Prince agreed to take care of Bambi until spring.

** By spring, Bambi would have been a year old or more, and would not have needed a doe to take care of him.



Bambi keeps his spots from his infancy throughout his first year. Doesn't seem to lose them and gain antlers until his second year. Faline retains her spots well into her second year.



Fawns lose their spots during the first summer and will weigh from 44 to 77 pounds (20 to 35 kg) by the first winter. Male fawns tend to be slightly larger and heavier than females. Bucks begin getting antler 'buttons' during their second spring which eventually grow into 'spikes'.



** Bambi should've been out of his spots way before his first winter and should have at least had antler buttons by the following spring.

** Faline should have been out of her spots a year before the end of the 2nd movie.

** Bambi should've been much larger then Faline, not the same size as her.

** Ronno should've been much larger then both of them, since he was obviously at least a year older then them.



Because Bambi is still the size of a 2 month old fawn by his second year and Faline isn't even out of her spots yet, there obviously won't be any breeding between the two until the following year[s]



Bucks are generally sexually mature at 1.5 years old and will begin to breed even in populations stacked with older bucks.



** Bambi should've been an adult buck by the middle of the second movie

** Faline should have been an adult doe by the end of the second movie

** Ronno should've been of breeding age (or past that) in the beginning of the second movie.

** Ronno should've been an adult buck in the beginning of the second movie and be much larger then Bambi and Faline, not the same size as them.



Of course, this is just a small example of the many misleading lessons we learn from the Disney film. Others include the lack of antler shedding on all of the bucks (antlers are shed annually and are regrown, covered in velvet), the misplaced time of year of the rut (deer are NOT twitterpated in the spring, only in the autumn months), and the lack of natural predators in the forest (aside from Man, deer are also targeted prey for mountain lions, bears and occassionaly, wolves).


But for now, enjoy this correct lesson on the TRUE life cycle of a white-tailed fawn :)


I had photos prepared, but Bambi Source keep sending me a message saying that they can't upload due to 'brower problems' :(


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Last comments

January 31, 2014
Usa Male Is not currently on the site
The ending of Bambi 2 is his first Spring? Isn't it?

January 27, 2014
Usa Male Is not currently on the site
Disney didn't want the animals to eat each other and anyways do you see a single Mountain lion or bear or even wolf! (Sorry Bolto fans:( So there is no predators in Bambi the movie. Only man is there predator. So that is my 2 comment expiation that this list as Pros and Cons

January 27, 2014
Usa Male Is not currently on the site
Well in the book Bambi, A life in the Woods it tells that Ronno is already a stag when Bambi first meets him so in the Movie he should've been like the Great prince when Bambi fights him in Bambi. So the book follows the correct life cycle

July 20, 2013
Is not currently on the site
This is very interesting. :P Nice! I never noticed these differences!

October 15, 2012
Usa Female Is not currently on the site
alos she mates in the fall and mates with ronno.

October 15, 2012
Usa Female Is not currently on the site
My character fawna loses her spots in the middle of autum

October 15, 2012
Is not currently on the site
It's very helpful! You should do more like this, I think!

October 15, 2012
Female Is not currently on the site
My problem is that I know most of what you have written, but since my fanfic is following the plot of the movies, it's difficult to stay realistic.

October 15, 2012
Usa Female Is not currently on the site
I hope this helps some people out with their characters or fanfics :)

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