Let’s see how much you know about the world around. The questions are true-false, and the answers are at the end. But don’t cheat.

1. Some female deer grow antlers, like the bucks.

2. Albino moose always have pink eyes.

3. A mommy and a daddy mouse can result in the birth of up to 1,000 baby mice per year.

4. Female turkeys sometimes grow beards, like the toms.

5. Whitetail deer give birth to only one fawn per year.

6. All black sea bass start life as females and become males a few years later.

7. When flatfish (flounders, sole, fluke, halibut) are born, they swim horizontally and have both eyes on one side of their head.

8. Lightning bugs do not make light very efficiently.

9. The scent of a skunk will alert nearby deer to danger.

10. Elephants can be taught to play hopscotch.


1. True. Approximately 1 in 10,000 does grow antlers. The adult in the accompanying photo was very defensive as Lynnea walked closer. She kept herself between the hikers and the fawns, and repeatedly stomped her front hoof and snorted as a warning to stay away.

2. True. All animals can be pure or partial albinos. Pure albinos have pink eyes, nails, scales and/or skin.

3. True. Achieving sexual maturity at about a month old, just one female provides between five and 10 litters annually. Each litter consist of five to 10 young, which are able to breed at approximately 30 days of age. Their gestation period is approximately 20 days. Breeding can occur throughout the year and thus if a pair of mice enter your home they can produce hundreds and hundreds of mice in just one year.

4. True. Although rare, hens sometimes grow the coarse hairs in a clump from their upper breast. My son’s first turkey had a beard but was actually a hen.

5. Maybe. Adult (1.5 years and older) often conceive two or even three embryos. Depending on available food, weather and genetics, they might give birth to up to three fawns. If food is scarce, the doe will absorb the weaker fawn for her own strength.

6. True. Black sea bass are hermaphrodites, which means they start life as females and when they reach 9 to 13 inches in length (2-5 years of age) they change sex to become males.

7. False. They swim vertically when born, like other fish, and have one eye on each side of the head. In their first year, they begin swimming horizontally and one eye migrates through or around the head to the top. Having both eyes on the same side helps them watch for predators (and prey) with double the vision.

8. False. Firefly lights are the most efficient lights in the world. One-hundred percent of the energy required is emitted as light. Compare that to an incandescent light bulb, which emits 10 percent of its energy as light and the rest as heat.

9. False. Early, one very dark morning, as I approached my deer stand, I did not see the striped skunk until it was too late. Eyes watering and reeking of the biting odor, I climbed my tree and watched three groups of deer pass downwind of me, all within 30 yards. Not one so much as flinched at the scent, which, for them, is not only normal but apparently not nearly as unpleasant as I experienced.

10. That would certainly be amusing, but it’s not true.

How did you do?

• 8 to 10 right: Ranger Rick

• 5 to 7 right: Yogi Bear

• 2 to 4 right: Elmer Fudd

• 0 or 1 right: What rock do you live under?

I encourage you to Get Out and learn more about our wonderful outdoors for yourself. Stop, look and smell the skunk ... er, roses.

Tom Charlton is a resident of Davenport and has hunted and fished in 20 states and across Canada. Please email your comments and column topic suggestions to him at muscabucks@gmail.com or to the editors at opinions@qctimes.com.


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