If you see the cucumbers of your garden suddenly vanishing and think that the deer that stay around have eaten them- you are probably wrong. You should check out for the rats, mice and, squirrels, but not a deer- especially not a deer.
But why not? Don’t they eat cucumbers? Yes, you are right, they love veggies but the story of cucumber is a little different. So, do deer eat cucumbers and cucumber plants? Let’s know everything about deer and cucumber today!
Can Deer Eat Cucumbers?
We know deer love vegetation and they are fond of any sweet fruits. But cucumber is not among them. Deer don’t prefer eating cucumbers. Compared to other vegetables and plants, deer try to avoid cucumbers as much as possible.
However, when it comes to the question if they can eat cucumbers or not- yes they can eat cucumbers. But simply they don’t like to eat it.
Why Deer Don’t Eat Cucumbers?
Deer are fond of vegetables and plants but what happens in the case of cucumbers? Why don’t they eat it? We will shortly explain it here. Unlike many other animals, deer, from a very young age, develops a sturdy digestive system.
But it is a fact that their digestive system is quite complicated. As a result, they have particular nutritional requirements that require to be fulfilled. This species will only settle for foods that they find delicious to eat.
If a food doesn’t match their taste bud, they will avoid that. Also, if any food is not highly nutritious, they will skip it. As they don’t prefer cucumbers, most people might think that cucumbers are not nutritious but well, they are!
Then why don’t deer prefer it? The thing that keeps the deer away from this specific garden vegetable is the powerful scent. Deer have a very strong smell power and don’t like the scent of cucumbers.
Besides, they are not fond of the stem because it is thorny. The entire cucumber is not listed as their favorite because they are thorny. The list of veggies that deer don’t like also includes squashes of leaves, eggplants, etc.
They prefer sweet fruits mostly. Take a look at “do deer eat grapes” to gather more ideas about their diet.
When Do Deer Eat Cucumbers?
These animals hate thick and hairy food. Also, they don’t prickly leaves or stems. This includes cucumber and that’s why they don’t eat it.
But in a very rare case, you might see a deer eating cucumbers or parts of cucumbers. Why does this happen? The major reason behind this is hunger. When a deer is too hungry and haven’t eaten for almost a month. Well, yes, they can live without food for about a month. However, they can’t pass a day without water.
And if they are this hungry and don’t get any food around at all, they will forcefully eat cucumbers even though they don’t like them. In this situation, they mostly go for the plants of cucumbers instead of directly consuming cucumbers.
Parts of Cucumbers
Yes, they don’t go for the entire cucumber but what about the other parts of this plant? Do they eat the other parts? Let’s know!
As we have mentioned above, deer don’t prefer eating cucumbers but in exceptional cases, they can do it to survive. But do they eat cucumber leaves? Cucumber leaves are quite larger and when a deer come closer to the plant, that’s what they see first.
Unfortunately, they still don’t like to eat them. The reason for a deer to not eat the cucumber leaves is these leaves have tiny hairs on them. And when a deer eats it or chews it, it gives them a furry feeling.
Cucumber vines are another part of cucumbers that a deer can eat but won’t. All around the vines of cucumbers, you will see tiny hairs.
Along with this, there are thorns too. We have discussed t before that deer don’t prefer thorns and hair on their food- you can already guess the deer avoid cucumber vines!
If they are given options, they won’t eat cucumber vines but well, if there are no other options, they might eat them.
The smell of the cucumber peel is distinctive; so, it’s easy to understand that deer don’t like it at all.
There are different cucumber varieties and some of them include thorns. More than thorns, the rough structure of the peel is something that gives unease in the mouth of the deer.
Is cucumber toxic to deer?
As deer don’t like or prefer cucumber, you might feel that it is toxic to them but in reality, it isn’t. Deer don’t eat it because they simply don’t like it. Cucumber isn’t toxic to them. They don’t prefer the thorny and rough texture of the cucumber that irritates their tongue and lining in the mouth. As a result, it’s difficult for them to eat cucumber.
Is cucumber deer-resistant?
If your garden is surrounded by cucumber plants, chances are, deer won’t come near. The scent of the cucumber or the cucumber plant is distinctive to the deer and they can immediately understand what the vegetable is. As a result, if they smell only cucumber, and if they get other fruits or vegetables available somewhere else, they won’t come close to your garden. These are less appealing to the deer; however, compared to the highly deer-resistant veggies, cucumber is moderately deer-resistant.
So why your deer aren’t eating cucumber is already explained by now, right? If you love your garden and you want to safeguard it, the best way is to grow some cucumber and eggplants surrounding the yard. It will help you keep away the deer.
But if you pet a deer, you can try some other fruits and veggies to quench their thirst for food and skip cucumber- who likes to eat what they don’t prefer?