The effects of big game depredation on juvenile fruit trees were studied in northern Utah. Utilization of trees was determined by counts of nipped and intact buds in spring. Height, width, basal diameter, number of buds, and initial fruit production of peach and apple trees were determined from trees protected from or browsed by mule deer in winter: Results from the 10 orchards studied indicated that removal of buds at the observed browsing levels had no effect on tree growth or initial fruit production.
Austin, Dennis D. and Urness, Philip J.
"Effects of browsing by mule deer on tree growth and fruit production in juvenile orchards,"
Great Basin Naturalist: Vol. 52
, Article 9.
Available at: http://scholarsarchive.byu.edu/gbn/vol52/iss4/9