Coues Deer – The Gray Ghost

The Coues Deer, or Arizona White, is called the Gray Ghost for good reason. They are pretty hard to find and when you do, they don’t stick around for very long.

Coues Deer
Coues Deer Outside of Our Hunting Unit

Where are the Coues Deer?

Would you like a challenge? Coues Deer are sought after and present a rewarding challenge to many hunters. Coues deer are relatively small compared to other mule deer found throughout the southwest.

Gray Bear and Mama Bear headed to Southern Arizona to find the elusive coues.

What makes them so sought out is the difficulty the present when you actually hunt them. The inhabit some pretty tough terrain. The deer are browsers.

The love to hang out in rugged terrain with scrub oak, Manzanita, mountain mahogany, juniper and piñon pine thickets.

The elevation they inhabit depends on the time of the year and can range from at between 4,000 and 8,000 feet above sea level.

We were lucky enough to see some coues deer, but they were outside our hunting unit on private land. We suspect that all of them were in the deer in the unit headed to private property as soon as the first shots were fired.

Fun Fact – Bet You Didn’t Know

The Coues deer was named for naturalist Elliott Coues who, from 1876 to 1880 was secretary and naturalist to the United States Geological and Geographical Survey.

The correct pronunciation of his last name, and therefore, the deer’s, is “cowz” – rhymes with plows, but it is commonly mispronounced as “cooz.” 


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