Illinois schoolchildren voted the white-tailed deer as the state animal in 1980. The white-tailed deer is an animal of incredible beauty and power; they are able to run up to 40 miles per hour, jump 9 foot fences, and swim 13 miles per hour.
The white underside of the deer's tail waves when running and is flashed as a warning when danger is sensed. It also stamps it's hooves to alert other deer of a possible threat. Fawns are born with white spots for camouflage. Both native Americans and settlers relied on the white-tailed deer for buckskin and food.
Eleven states have adopted the white-tailed deer as a state symbol: Arkansas, Illinois, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.