A handsome breeder buck on our ranch.
|Axis deer (Axis
axis) come from the tropics of India, and are also called chital deer which means spotted
They have a rust coat with white spots, and they stay spotted all their
life. In fact the spots on the adults are brighter and show more than their
fawns'. They have a large, white throat patch which is more prominent in
the males. Axis fawns look a lot like whitetail fawns, but one difference
is that the axis have a black stripe down their backs, and the whitetail
fawns do not.|
Another feature of axis is that, being a tropical deer, they do not follow a seasonal rut. Bucks can be found in hard horn and in velvet at the same time any time in the year, and that also means that fawning can occur in any month.
Axis are medium size deer with bucks standing 29 - 39" tall and weighing 150 - 250 lbs. Does stand a few inches shorter at 26 - 33" but weigh quite a bit less at 90 - 150 lbs.
Axis antlers have a six point plan. They sweep back into an upward curve and have three points each. More points than six would be atypical. Antlers are most often in the 20" range. Antlers in the 30" range are considered excellent trophies, and if they reach 36" they are exceptional. The world record occurred in India and is 41".
Axis, unlike most deer, are primarily grazers with their normal percent of graze 80 - 90%, but they will switch to browse when they need to.
They organize into family units. A young doe will often remain with her mother, even after her own first fawn. Mixed groups and separate bachelor groups can form as well.
Axis meat is delicious and is even preferred to whitetail by a number of people. Like venison from the whitetail, it is extremely lean, and is best cooked with added fats.