We compared time-, age-, and cause-specific rates of mortality among female white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) (≥1 yr old) in river bottom, prairie-agricultural, and mountain-foothill habitats of eastern Montana during 1980-89 to clarify relationships between harvest and natural mortality. Hunting regulations for antlerless deer varied among areas and years. Differences (P < 0.001) in annual survival rates were documented with regard to study area, time period, and age. Hunting was the primary factor influencing survivorship in all cases. Mortality attributable to natural (≤5%) and other or undocumented causes (generally ≤8%) was low and did not differ (P > 0.20) relative to study area, time period, and age. Our findings suggest that when adult females are already exploited, additional harvest may result in decreased survival because there is little opportunity for compensatory mortality in this segment of the population.