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deerDeer animal of the family Cervidea which is found in most parts of the world except Australia. The only deer in Africa are small numbers of red deer found in the North in forested area. Antlers , solid bony outgrow the skull , developed in the males of most species and shed are renewed annually.

The antlers are covered by velvet, which is a soft hairy skin permeated by blood vessels, when dried it is rubbed off as the antlers mature. The stem of the antler is called the beam, and the branches are the tines. These antlers are used like weapons and during the breeding season when combats are common between bucks .

Some deers lack antlers (the musk deer and Chinese a river deer) the upper canines are long and serve as weapons. Deer are polygamous. They eat a variety of herbaceous plants, lichens, mosses, and leaves and bark of trees.In the United States the white tailed deer which lives in woodlands and in Central America and North South America was a source of food, buck skins , and other necessities for the American Indian and the white settler.

Deer flesh, called venison is considered a delicacy. Slaughterd through the years nearly exterminated the white tail, is now restored in large numbers in the Eastern United States and in the West. In the summer months its upper parts are reddish brown, and in winter grayish. The mule deer exists in reduced numbers from the plains region westward, and is closely related to the black tailed deer which is a Pacific Coast form.

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