Seasonal molt in White Tailed Deer

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Typically, this time of year DEC hears from people who are concerned because they are seeing deer with rough coat conditions as shown in the photos.

Most people are worried that their appearance might show signs of disease or parasite infestation, but in general deer that show this appearance are in a natural process of shedding. White-tailed deer in New York shed their coats twice a year, in the spring and again in the late summer.

Hair loss occurs in patches which gives the deer a scruffy appearance. In very rare occurrences in New York state, hair loss can occur due to parasitic infestations. However, when hair loss is caused by an infestation, other symptoms will be noticeable, such as leathery or wrinkled skin.

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