The buck stops here

PORT MANSFIELD — Like many residents, Jessica Simmons stays away from the herd of white-tail deer as bucks chase does across this tiny fishing village.

But hundreds of families drive into town to feed the stags and does during rutting season, making the local deer population a tourist attraction.

“I personally do not interact with the deer during the rut season because the does are in heat,” said Simmons, office manager at the Port Mansfield Chamber of Commerce.

During mating season, some bucks spar in the streets of this bayside village billed as the hottest fishing spot on the Texas coast. It’s also a town where deer can outnumber people.

“You see the rut going on,” Simmons said. “There are lots of bucks in town. They’re more active. The bucks’ horns interlock. The bucks chase the does until the does give up.

“We’re definitely unique that we have them here.”

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