Did you know that deer eat cedar trees? Many people are surprised to learn this, but it's true! Deer love the taste of cedar, and they often eat these trees to get a snack. This can be bad news for cedar trees, as deer can damage them by eating their branches and leaves. If you have a cedar tree in your yard, be prepared to protect it from deer.
There are several things you can do to keep deer away from your cedar tree, including using fencing or deterrent sprays. You can also encourage natural predators of deer in your area to help reduce their population. Keep these tips in mind if you want to protect your cedar tree from hungry deer. In some areas, cedar trees make up a significant portion of the deer diet.
Why do deer eat cedar trees?
There are many reasons why deer might eat cedar trees. Some of the most common reasons include:
- The leaves of the cedar tree are high in nutrients that deer need, including protein, calcium, and phosphorus.
- Cedar trees also provide a good source of water for deer during dry periods.
- Deer use cedars as a way to protect themselves from predators or bad weather by hiding in the dense foliage.
Nutritional benefits of cedar trees for deer
Cedar trees provide many benefits for deer, including nutritional ones. The needles and berries of cedar trees are high in protein and essential nutrients like phosphorus and potassium that deer need to stay healthy. Cedar also provides cover from the elements and predators, as well as a place to bed down for the night. In winter, when other food sources are difficult to come by, cedar can be a lifesaver for deer herds.
What type of cedar trees do deer like to eat?
There are several types of cedar trees that deer like to eat: Eastern Red Cedar, Western Red Cedar, Alaska-Canada Cedar, Atlantic White Cedar, and Atlas Cedar are just a few. Each type of tree has a different taste that appeals to different deer populations.
Eastern Red Cedar: The most widely distributed of the true cedars, this species is found throughout the eastern United States and Canada. It is a small to medium sized tree with reddish-brown bark and blue-green needles. The cones are small and round with scale tips that point outwards. Deer love the sweet smell and flavor of Eastern red cedar berries which make up an important part of their winter diet in some areas.
Alaska-Canada Cedar: Also known as yellow paperbark cedar, this massive evergreen can grow up to 100 feet tall! It has shaggy bark covering its trunk. Underneath this protective outer layer is soft wood perfect for carving or making dugout canoes (traditional uses by Indigenous peoples). Alaska-Canada Cedars have small round cones and are a favorite snack for hungry deer browsing in late summer/early fall.
How to feed cedar trees to deer?
Cedar trees are an important part of the ecosystem in many parts of North America. They provide shelter and food for a variety of animals, including deer. Deer will eat the leaves, twigs, and buds of cedar trees. You can encourage deer to feed on cedar trees by providing them with access to areas where these trees grow. In addition, you can supplement their diet with other foods that they find appealing such as fruits and nuts.
How do deer eat cedar trees?
Cedar trees are an important part of the diet of deer in many parts of North America. The cambium, or inner bark, is a rich source of nutrients that helps deer survive during winter when other food sources may be in limited supply. Cedar tree browse also provides essential vitamins and minerals that help does produce healthy fawns. In some areas, cedar trees may make up as much as 50% of the annual browsing by deer.
Deer typically eat cedar trees by stripping off the outermost layer of bark with their teeth. This process is called debarking and it damages the tree's ability to transport water and nutrients from its roots to its leaves. Over time, this can kill the tree if enough damage is done. However, most cedar trees can withstand moderate levels of debarking without dying because they have thick layers of protective bark.
When to feed cedar trees to deer?
Feeding cedar to deer depends on the time of year and the region where you live. In general, it is best to wait until late fall or early winter when natural browse is scarce and the deer need extra calories to survive the cold months ahead. However, if you live in an area with a long growing season (such as the southeastern United States), then you can start feeding cedar trees to deer as early as August or September. Just be sure to stop feeding before spring so that the deer don't become dependent on your supplemental food sources.
Are cedar trees dangerous for deer to eat?
Many cedar berries are safe for deer to eat. However, the toxicity of cedar berries varies depending on the species of tree; some species contain higher levels of toxins than others. Ingesting large quantities of cedar berries can cause liver and kidney damage or even death in deer.
How to prevent deer from eating cedar trees?
Cedar trees are a common landscaping element in many yards, but they can be difficult to keep alive if deer frequent the area. Deer will eat cedar trees, especially young ones, causing extensive damage that can eventually kill the tree. If you live in an area with a high deer population, there are several things you can do to prevent them from eating your cedar trees.
- Fencing: The most effective way to keep deer away from cedar trees is to erect a fence around the perimeter of your property. Deer fences should be at least 8 feet tall and made of sturdy material such as wire mesh or welded wire. Be sure to bury the bottom few feet of fencing underground so that deer cannot dig underneath it.
- Deer Repellents: There are various commercial repellents available on the market that will deter deer from coming into contact with treated plants and flowers. These products typically contain unpleasant tastes or smells that discourage animals from nibbling on foliage. Repellents must be reapplied regularly, according to the manufacturer's instructions, in order to remain effective against curious wildlife.
- Some people also swear by home remedies like hanging bars of soap or human hair near vulnerable plants as these too have been known to repel some browsing mammals.
- Planting deterrents: Another way to keep deer away from cedar trees is to plant deer-resistant species nearby. Some examples of plants that deter deer include lavender, marigolds, daffodils, and garlic.
Can deer digest cedar trees?
Deer eat many different types of plants, including cedar trees. While deer will consume large quantities of plant matter, they do not digest all of it equally well. In general, deer digest grasses better than browse (woody twigs and leaves). However, there is some evidence that cedars may be more easily digested by deer than other browse species. This difference may be due to the chemical composition of cedars or how they break down in the gut during digestion.
Can baby deer eat cedar trees?
Yes, baby deer can eat cedar trees. Cedar trees are a type of evergreen tree that produces small cones and needle-like leaves. The needles of the cedar tree are sharp, so they can cause some irritation to the deer's mouth and throat. However, the needles are not poisonous, so they will not harm baby deer if ingested.
Do deer eat cedar trees summary
Deer eating cedar trees is a problem for several reasons. First, deer are browsers, meaning they eat the major portion of the trees. This damages the plant and prevents it from growing properly. Second, deer have four stomachs that extract nutrients differently than other animals. This means that they can digest cedar leaves better than other animals, which gives them an advantage over other herbivores in terms of competition for food resources such as cedar trees. Third, cedars produce toxins that deter many predators from eating them; however, deer are somewhat immune to these toxins, as long as they don't consume large quantities of cedar.