When Do Whitetail Fawns Lose Their Spots?

Most fawns lose their spots by their first winter.    At this point their coat is the normal brown color you often see on whitetail deer.  However, some late born fawns can have light spots when hunting seasons start in some states.

Why Do Baby Deer have white spots?

Baby white-tailed deer, better known as fawns, have white spots to help them hide in plain sight and blend in on the forest floor. These spots resemble light and shadow in the forest acting as natural camouflage.

When a baby deer is born, their mother will lick them clean in an attempt to remove any odors that could help predators find their location. In their first few weeks, fawns do not have a scent as their scent glands aren't developed at birth. Whitetail fawns have spots and other age related characteristics that help protect them from predators.

Most fawns will lose their spots after they are three or four months old, which is usually in the summer season. At this point,  a fawn would be better described as a yearling since they will now weigh about 60 or 70 pounds.

Other Things That Protect Whitetail Fawns From Predators

Another characteristic that helps protect fawns and yearlings from predators is their ability to remain motionless and blend in with their surroundings. They have a natural instinct to freeze and remain completely still when they sense danger. This makes them less visible to predators who may be nearby.

Additionally, fawns and yearlings are often found in dense cover, such as tall grasses or thick bushes, which provides them with a natural form of camouflage. They are also very agile and have the ability to quickly and nimbly navigate through these types of environments.

Finally, fawns and yearlings have a unique scent that is not usually picked up by predators. This is due to the fact that they have not yet developed certain scent glands, which helps to make them less noticeable to predators who rely on their sense of smell to find prey. 

Is It Possible To Estimate A Fawn’s Age?

Most fawns lose their spots between the ages of three and four months.  By late summer, or early fall, their spots have disappeared.  They often weigh about 60 or 70 pounds at this point, and their snouts look shorter compared to those of adults. 

As a buck fawn grows, it begins to grow antlers at about ten months of age. Throughout adulthood, they will shed and regrow their antlers before each fall.  Buck fawns are driven away from their mother's home range before the first rut, or mating season.  

Female yearlings have the ability to reproduce at a mere six months of age, and give birth to their fawns at approximately one year old. You can differentiate young does from males by observing the absence of "buttons" or the beginnings of antler growth on a male yearling. Additionally, young females tend to stay alongside their mothers for as long as two years.