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View Full Version : What is a Blacktail Cross??



Gamehog
03-24-2011, 05:28 PM
Can someone please help me out on this subject. I have seen this explained by so many people in many different ways. Yes, I know that I5 in California is the cut off for the true Blacktail and the so called crosses. What I am looking for is real hard DNA proof in a published journal of sicence that the Blacktail and Mule deer are two different spicies. From what I have found, no one has done a study to prove that the deer in the Sierra Nevada foothills are a cross. If you can please provide a link, I would love to read about it.

sjsmallfield
03-24-2011, 06:30 PM
Hey Gamehog. My dad read an article on that subject in a magazine that he gets last year. I'll see if I can track it down for you.

Gamehog
03-25-2011, 10:06 AM
Hey Gamehog. My dad read an article on that subject in a magazine that he gets last year. I'll see if I can track it down for you.

Thanks buddy, anyone else have some info?

Jerry
03-25-2011, 01:22 PM
No empirical data, but just the info you all ready have. In Oregon, The dividing line is the Cascade mtns. Where you can find what I have always heard called a "Benchleg", which is supposed to be a cross between the coast blacktail and the mulie. I'd be real curious to know also if there is truly a distinct difference and if they really do cross??

sticknbiggens
03-25-2011, 01:23 PM
For many years the Blacktail Deer has been considered a subspecies of the Mule deer, however recent DNA testing has proven this not to be the case. In Valerius Geist's book Mule Deer Country he explains that by testing the mitochondrial DNA (the mothers DNA ) of the three species (blacktail, whitetail and mule deer), researchers have now determined that it was the mating of Whitetail does and Blacktail buck's that gave rise to the Mule deer and not the opposite as was once suspected.

It is now believed that millions of years ago the Whitetail deer expanded its range down the east coast of the United States, across Mexico, and then back up the West coast, where it eventually evolved into the Blacktail Deer. This may help to explain the strong resemblance in appearance and psychological characteristics between the two. Thousands of years later as the recently evolved Blacktail's range spread eastward and the Whitehall's range again expanded westward, the two deer again met. At this point the Blacktail bucks, displaced the Whitetail bucks, and bred the Whitetail does. Researches now believe that it is this hybridization that produced what is now know as the Muledeer.

I think I found some info on the DFG site a few years ago too. I had a place I horn hunted east of Roseville. That was always a question I had too. I have some monster sheds I've found and never took the time to score them because of this. Hope you find the info your looking for.

Gamehog
03-25-2011, 04:57 PM
Thanks guys, I hope someone will do some DNA testing on the Sierra Nevada foothill deer someday. This would help put to rest the argument people have had about these deer being crossed with mulies. It looks to me if the mtDNA in these deer shows Whitetail then we would have a cross.

BEETLEGUY
03-27-2011, 03:19 AM
I believe it was the DFG website that I read about the cross. I also heard that DFG is trying to recognize these deer as a species.

BOHNTR
03-27-2011, 08:30 AM
Sierra Nevada foothill deer are mule deer and generally not Columbian Blacktail. DFG has completed several studies over the years on the various subspecies they classify in the state. That particular area is classified as CA mule deer. Here's a link to a book on the study and deer throughout the Golden State....hope it helps:

http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:6DB9_7Oo1t8J:www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/hunting/deer/docs/deerguide.pdf+species+of+deer+in+CA&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESiU-iogX4Dwvc1VrRONaYafLv4Sn27ZIYt186rFJLoTNVH8JRA0NVk YbLA-3tdYDEiazir_Vfhs6ePPc33mXVAQwPbDPm3WOziE9_GyxhbBi9 bShs7VHc4Fvjv7rVQiczVsXDam&sig=AHIEtbQPtCa5FyjbhM3Si0GAqhJWIavHzQ

Gamehog
03-27-2011, 10:01 PM
Sierra Nevada foothill deer are mule deer and generally not Columbian Blacktail. DFG has completed several studies over the years on the various subspecies they classify in the state. That particular area is classified as CA mule deer. Here's a link to a book on the study and deer throughout the Golden State....hope it helps:

http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:6DB9_7Oo1t8J:www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/hunting/deer/docs/deerguide.pdf+species+of+deer+in+CA&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESiU-iogX4Dwvc1VrRONaYafLv4Sn27ZIYt186rFJLoTNVH8JRA0NVk YbLA-3tdYDEiazir_Vfhs6ePPc33mXVAQwPbDPm3WOziE9_GyxhbBi9 bShs7VHc4Fvjv7rVQiczVsXDam&sig=AHIEtbQPtCa5FyjbhM3Si0GAqhJWIavHzQ

It looks to me the map and the description show the area I hunt in Amador County to be Columbian Blacktail Deer.

BOHNTR
03-27-2011, 10:42 PM
It looks to me the map and the description show the area I hunt in Amador County to be Columbian Blacktail Deer.

If you're hunting East of Sacramento in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada range, you're most likely hunting CA Mule Deer. There are a few documented cases west of there of some hybrids, but they're usually not that far East. That's one of the reasons the B&C / P&Y boundaries in that particular geographical area is West of I-5 for Columbian Blacktail. They simply wanted to make sure the animals measured are pure Columbian Blacktail.

brudno
03-27-2011, 10:50 PM
For many years the Blacktail Deer has been considered a subspecies of the Mule deer, however recent DNA testing has proven this not to be the case. In Valerius Geist's book Mule Deer Country he explains that by testing the mitochondrial DNA (the mothers DNA ) of the three species (blacktail, whitetail and mule deer), researchers have now determined that it was the mating of Whitetail does and Blacktail buck's that gave rise to the Mule deer and not the opposite as was once suspected.

It is now believed that millions of years ago the Whitetail deer expanded its range down the east coast of the United States, across Mexico, and then back up the West coast, where it eventually evolved into the Blacktail Deer. This may help to explain the strong resemblance in appearance and psychological characteristics between the two. Thousands of years later as the recently evolved Blacktail's range spread eastward and the Whitehall's range again expanded westward, the two deer again met. At this point the Blacktail bucks, displaced the Whitetail bucks, and bred the Whitetail does. Researches now believe that it is this hybridization that produced what is now know as the Muledeer.

I think I found some info on the DFG site a few years ago too. I had a place I horn hunted east of Roseville. That was always a question I had too. I have some monster sheds I've found and never took the time to score them because of this. Hope you find the info your looking for.

Blacktail bucks displaced Whitetail Bucks? I guess thats just a hard theory to grasp, considering the problems Mule deer bucks are having being out breed by whitetail bucks, not disagreeing with what you said or anything just seems odd to me.

Gamehog
03-27-2011, 11:25 PM
If you're hunting East of Sacramento in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada range, you're most likely hunting CA Mule Deer. There are a few documented cases west of there of some hybrids, but they're usually not that far East. That's one of the reasons the B&C / P&Y boundaries in that particular geographical area is West of I-5 for Columbian Blacktail. They simply wanted to make sure the animals measured are pure Columbian Blacktail.
I understand that B&C / P&Y have boundaries and they need too. I'm just more of a hard science guy and don't want to say these deer at the 500 to 1500 foot elevation are hybrids without a DNA test. I-5 can't stop genetics....

Gamehog
03-27-2011, 11:34 PM
Thank you for the info BOHNTR, it was very helpful.

BEETLEGUY
03-27-2011, 11:53 PM
Thanks for the link!


Sierra Nevada foothill deer are mule deer and generally not Columbian Blacktail. DFG has completed several studies over the years on the various subspecies they classify in the state. That particular area is classified as CA mule deer. Here's a link to a book on the study and deer throughout the Golden State....hope it helps:

http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:6DB9_7Oo1t8J:www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/hunting/deer/docs/deerguide.pdf+species+of+deer+in+CA&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESiU-iogX4Dwvc1VrRONaYafLv4Sn27ZIYt186rFJLoTNVH8JRA0NVk YbLA-3tdYDEiazir_Vfhs6ePPc33mXVAQwPbDPm3WOziE9_GyxhbBi9 bShs7VHc4Fvjv7rVQiczVsXDam&sig=AHIEtbQPtCa5FyjbhM3Si0GAqhJWIavHzQ