Although deer live fairly tranquil lives, they must live cautiously and with a degree of alertness, for they must be aware of when danger approaches. In the wilderness, danger comes in the form of predators, meat eating animals who rely on deer and other forest creatures for sustenance. The main predators of the deer are mountain lions, wolves, and coyotes, although in some areas there are others such as bears, bobcats, dogs and alligators.
The deer’s keen senses offer them a good perception of when danger is around. If they are faced with a predator, the deer’s only defense is to run. Deer are one of the fastest animals in the forest, so this often proves successful.
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However, if caught by a predator, deer have no other method of defense, and must succumb. Bucks are sometimes able to use their antlers to ward off predators. Bucks have been known to kill a few wolves in pack before being devoured by the rest. Deer are also great swimmers; they’ll often take to the water to evade predators who can’t swim.
Humans are also a threat to deer. Although human intervention has not affected deer populations significantly, hunting has. But in most parts, hunting helps keep deer populations at a reasonable level. Also, many deer die each year from being hit by cars.