Mule Deer attacks Woman
October 2009 Colorado Deer Story
A young buck mule deer gored a 63-year-old woman near Florissant on Monday after she apparently called to the animal in an attempt to pet him, officials from the state Division of Wildlife said today in a news release.
Responding to her calls, the deer came closer, then lowered his head and charged the woman, identified as Joan Nutt, who was at her sister’s home when the attack occurred, officials said in a statement. She grabbed one of the deer’s antlers in an attempt to fend him off, but he knocked her down before she could escape.
A motorist driving by the home saw the deer stomping Nutt, stopped to assist and was able to scare the animal away before contacting the Teller County Sheriff’s Office.
Emergency medical personnel took Nutt to Pikes Peak Regional Medical Center in Woodland Park. The deer’s antlers and hooves left cuts on her elbow and lower arm, in addition to minor wounds on her hands, upper leg, stomach and hip. She was released from the hospital after surgeons placed a pin in one of her arms, said Michael Seraphin, a spokesman for the Wildlife Division.
The deer was tranquilized and later euthanized because officials deemed it a “threat to human safety.” His carcass was sent to a Fort Collins lab for additional testing, but results haven’t been released. Seraphin stressed that wildlife officials don’t lightly decide to euthanize an animal.
Medics treating Nutt at the scene said they had to continually chase the buck away because he kept returning to the area. That could be an indication that someone had tried to domesticate and treat him as a pet, said wildlife officer Aaron Flohrs, who was at the scene.
The family said that the deer frequently visited the property, but there was no clear evidence that Nutt was feeding him. Nutt reiterated today that the family hadn’t been feeding him either, Seraphin said. The home is located in a rural subdivision, away from designated camping areas.