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      Nature Report: Deer Blind Days

      A big bobcat sits patiently in the pre-dawn haze, watching and waiting for any movement.

      The stealthy cat is poised to pounce on any prey that might appear in the tall grass.

      The cat vanishes as a buck strolls thru the leafless mesquite.

      He is a beautiful young 10 point, probably no more than three or four years old, with exceptional antlers for a deer his age.

      He stomps the ground nervously and licks his nose repeatedly to moisten it and accentuate his olfactory powers.

      His long thin neck is indicative of his youth, and his slender frame reveals weight loss from chasing does during the December rut.

      This handsome young buck possesses tremendous potential and has several years to mature before reaching his peak of antler development.

      As the morning sunrise finally breaks momentarily thru the clouds, a young eight point moves across the clearing.

      Later, a slightly older 11 point surveys the area, hoping to spot a willing doe.

      Soon, a doe steps cautiously out of the brush straining her neck to detect any danger.

      Within seconds another doe emerges, but quickly flees. It is the presence of the does that has the bucks on high alert.

      Nearby, a pair of young bucks locks antlers, kicking up a dust storm.

      The thickly muscled 11 point is attracted by the tussle, and the two skirmishers flee at his approach.

      It's just another morning in a South Texas deer blind, and from bobcats to big bucks, you just never know what might be peering back at you.