Hartman Reserve is home to many different species of animals, some of which are, whitetail deer, fox squirrels, beavers, and groundhogs. Let’s talk about two of those. White-tailed deer are one of the most common animals in Iowa. The males are called bucks, the females does, and the young deer are fawns like Bambi! They wave their tails from side to side when startled. They are very agile and can bound at speeds of up to 30 miles per hour through the forest. White-tailed deer are generally solitary, especially in the summer. The basic social unit is the females and their fawns. They do sometimes, however, graze together in large herds. Antlers are not used as weapons against predators, but instead during the mating season. The buck’s antlers shed from January to March, so if you’re lucky you might be able to find some! Did you know that white-tailed deer are good swimmers and will often use streams and lakes to escape predators? Fox squirrels are medium-sized tree squirrels with long, furry tails. The most common color of fox squirrels is reddish-brown. You will see a lot of these in and around Hartman! The fox squirrels are most common in the east and the middle United States. Food is important during the cold winter months for fox squirrels. Before the cold hits, they bury their food. Fortunately, they can smell food up to a foot under snow and will dig to get to it. Fox squirrels lose 25% of their food to thieves while it is buried. Squirrels may pretend to bury their nut to throw off potential thieves. Some of the nuts never get dug up, which results in more trees. Did you know that humans introduced squirrels to most of our city parks?