Columbian Black-tailed Deer

Two Columbian black-tailed deer along the trail in the park.

NPS/Rob Parenti

The Colombian black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus) is a native species found on the National Preserve and is a subspecies of the Mule deer. The range of population for the Colombia black-tailed deer extends from Northern California up to British Columbia and they are a keystone species in many of these environments.

At Oregon Caves National Monument and Preserve, the Colombian black-tailed deer can usually be found at dusk and dawn grazing on some of the local vegetation such as young budding trees, berries, lichen, fungi, and other leafy plants.

Key characteristics to look for when identifying these deer are searching for the wide, broad tail with black fur running vertically down the tail. Colombian black-tailed deer tend to also have evenly forked antlers, unlike the closely related White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) which have tines extending off single beams for their antlers.

Last updated: August 5, 2018

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