Eighteen white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) were immobilized with a single intramuscular injection of etorphine hydrochloride (20 μg/kg of body weight) and xylazine (0.4 mg./kg. of body weight). The deer ranged in age from 6 months to 8 years and some were in poor physical condition. The drugs were administered in syringes projected with a CO2-powered gun. Time required for immobilization was satisfactory and deer were calm while the drugs took effect. Etorphine and xylazine provided adequate sedation and immobilization of the deer for minor surgical procedures, handling and transporting. Reversal of etorphine with cyprenorphine hydrochloride was prompt and the deer remained calm during early ambulation. Results were satisfactory except when insufficient doses of the combination were given, or when deer were exhausted at time of drug administration.
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