August 29, 2011
Nutritionists say people are healthiest when they eat a variety of foods: fruits and vegetables, protein and grains.
Deer normally eat green grasses in the summer, said Dr. Philip Gipson, a professor of natural resource management at Texas Tech University in Lubbock.
“But we don’t have it this time of year,” he said. “All we have is leftover grasses from last year.”
He likened the old grasses to humans eating junk food, but worse.
“It’s like eating the wrappers of junk food,” he said. “It will fill them up, but they just can’t get the nourishment they need.”
But deer in West Texas don’t stop looking, and some have turned to cedar plants. Gipson said white-tailed deer and mule deer have recently been seen gnawing on their berries.
“They also eat the green on the cedars,” Gipson said. “But those are very poor rations for deer.
“It’s kind of a last resort, and it means they are hurting.”
As bad as that sounds, Gipson said there are bright spots on the range.