Basic+ Word of the Day: deer

deer (noun) LISTEN

A deer in headlights

A deer is a medium-sized mammal, smaller than an elk or a moose.

  • The deer were eating the flowers in my garden.
  • When you see a mother deer crossing the road, one or two young deer usually follow.
  • Male deer have antlers.
  • The hunter needed a license to hunt for deer.

Don't confuse it with

dear: beloved. Example: “Heather’s grandchildren are very dear to her.”

Common uses

Imagine you are driving on a country road at night and a deer stops in the middle of the road, so afraid that it can’t move. That is where we get the expression, “He was like a deer in headlights.” It means that someone is so frightened that they can’t take any action. (Headlights are the lights on the front of a car.)

Did you know?

A female deer is called a doe. A male deer is called a stag or a buck. A baby deer is called a fawn.

Related words

reindeer: a large deer of the northern and arctic regions. Example: “Reindeer are accustom to cold weather and snow.”

In pop culture

It is said that reindeer pull Santa’s sleigh. Watch this video of the popular song, “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.”

There are other meanings of deer.
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