Composition of some plants eaten by deer in the Black Hills of South Dakota

Gastler, G.F.; Moxon, A.L.; Mckean, W.T.

Jour Wildlife Management 15(4): 352-357


DOI: 10.2307/3796577
Accession: 024374424

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Samples of thirteen palatable and five non-palatable plants browsed by Black Hills deer were collected at various intervals and analyzed for moisture, ash, crude protein, crude fat, crude fiber, N-free extract, carotene, P, Ca, Fe, and Mn. One sampling was also analyzed for reducing and total sugars. Palatability was based on observations of feeding habits of the deer and examination of the stomach contents from many deer. Differences in the chemical composition of the various species and variations in the chemical composition of the same sp. at different sampling dates were found. No great reduction in chemical constituents which might in turn be indicative of a reduction in nutritional value to the deer through the critical period, January to April, was found. Chemical analysis did not explain the division of the species into palatable and non-palatable groups.