Skip to comments.The Buck Who Carried His Rivalís Head (Deer Survives 2 Months w/ Severed Head Locked in Its Antlers)
Posted on 02/22/2014 3:34:18 PM PST by DogByte6RER
The Buck Who Carried His Rivals Head
While it may look like a grisly trophy, the story behind the picture of the antler-locked bucks above is one of survival and endurance. I recently spoke with Luke Laha, a wildlife management instructor in Kansas, about how he and his students rescued an antler-locked deer that had been carrying around the head of his rival. So how did this deer come to be wearing such bizarre headgear? Laha said that there was once a body attached to that head, before the coyotes came.
Laha works as an instructor at Pratt Community Colleges Wildlife Enterprise Management program, and he first saw the deer while scouting out some territory in south-central Kansas. The encounter was a fleeting one, but Laha said that the deer remained in the back of his mind for months.
I saw it was a decently-sized buck with what I thought at the time was a smaller buck, Laha said. But then I saw that all the was left of the second one was the head, spine, and rib cage.
That was about two months ago. To the coyotes living in the area, the buck was a moving feast. Laha was not able to help the deer on their first meeting, but he remembered the encounter when he and his students came back to the property to trap some yotes. He expected to find the remains of one or both of the deer earlier this year. But he hoped he would find the buck alive and asked his students to keep an eye out for a deer with a rack too many.
We trapped all week but didnt see anything, he said. On the very last day, Friday, we got to the last trap on the left side of the property and one of my students says hey, theres your buck.
It was January 17 and the snow had mostly melted. Despite lasting this long, Laha could see that the deer was struggling.
Its been stressed for the last few months, pulling around its own body weight and looking-eye-to-eye with coyotes, he explained.
Then Laha and his class moved into action, trailing the buck on 4x4s and on foot. As chases go, it wasnt the most exciting.
He was falling over every 20 feet or so, really struggling, Laha said. When we got on top of him, the fight was out of him.
The buck was already down when one of Lahas students, Zack Sammons, mounted the animal and held it while he and Laha debated how to separate the two racks. Lacking a hacksaw, they ended up doing it by hand. You can see the aftermath below in a video Laha uploaded to YouTube:
Laha added that the whole class was involved in the chase, which occurred mostly on foot after the deer entered the cover of trees.
The buck was released safely, although Laha said hes not sure if the deer will be strong enough to survive the rest of the winter. He has not seen it since.
Still, with a lighter load and less coyotes chasing him, the buck may very well get a second lease at life. Or at least a better chance than he would waiting for his antlers to shed.
We werent doing this to make a video or make something out of it; we just wanted to save this deers life if we could, Laha said, after the videos popularity exploded on Facebook.
But Laha did get one additional souvenir from the rescue. He cleared the deer head that dropped off with a game warden and plans on having it mounted in his classroom.
Laha doesnt plan on naming the mount, but I suggest calling it the Godfather buck.
Image courtesy Luke Laha
Direct link to the YouTube video ...
Reminds me of Thudwick, the Moose.
Anybody up for a doubleheader?
Too right. You can't eat the horns. But you can't "grill it till you kill it" either.
As a passing thought any atypical buck (hanging on the wall) got that way by surviving all the fights but the last.
The domesticated version.
and they didn’t provide the poor thing with some food, or a bale of hay afterwards?
Yeah, two bucks. nyuk nyuk nyuk
I’m not squeamish but that’s pretty disturbing.
I bet he didn’t have many more rivals.
But did he get any girls?
Those atypicals all look like they were 1 or 2 years shy of “natural death.” Plenty of offspring out there.
That poor, poor creature, that whole thing must have been awful for him.
I’m glad these people were able to help him and I hope he survives.
All the other reindeer USED to laugh and call him names.
Does every Cabella’s have a deer hall of fame, or is that the one in Hamburg, PA?
I don’t imagine he did, after that. Seems like that’d be enough of “the wild thing” for one season.
To Chickensoup- no kidding. There’s no wildlife rescue orgs in Kansas?
WTF!!! What movie (please tell me it’s a movie!!) is that from? More of Grimm and Nefarious Tales?
Most folks will tell you camels are not found in Arizonas high country. Truth is, those adaptable beasts can thrive in just about any kind of terrain. The U.S. Army introduced camels to the Southwest back in the 1850s, using them as beasts of burden while surveying a road across northern Arizona. But, the Civil War interrupted the great camel experiment, and most of the homely critters were sold at auction. A few were turned loose to run wildand therein lies the basis for the legend of Red Ghost.
The story begins back in 1883 at a lonely ranch near Eagle Creek in southeastern Arizona. The Apache wars were drawing to a close. However, a few renegade bands were on the prowl, keeping isolated ranches in a constant state of siege. Early one morning, two men rode out to check on the livestock leaving their wives at the ranch with the children. About midmorning, one of the women went down to the spring to fetch a bucket of water while the other remained in the house with the children.
Suddenly one of the dogs began to bark ferociously. The woman inside the house heard a terrifying scream. Looking out the window, she saw a huge, reddish-hued beast run by with a devilish-looking creature strapped on its back.
The frightened woman barricaded herself in the house and waited anxiously for the men to return. That night they found the body of the other woman, trampled to death. Next day tracks were found, cloven hoof prints much larger than those of a horse, along with long strands of reddish hair.
A few days later, a party of prospectors near Clifton were awakened by the sound of thundering hoofs and ear-piercing screams. Their tent collapsed, and the men clawed their way out of the tangle just in time to see a gigantic creature run off in the moonlight. The next day, they too, found huge clovenhoof prints and long, red strands of hair clinging to the brush.
Naturally these stories grew and were embellished by local raconteurs. One man claimed he saw the beast kill and eat a grizzly bear. Another insisted he had chased the Red Ghost, only to have it disappear before his eyes.
A few months after the incident with the miners, Cyrus Hamblin, a rancher on the Salt River, rode up on the animal while rounding up cows. Hamblin recognized the beast as a camel, with something tied to its back that resembled the skeleton of a man. Although Hamblin had a reputation as an honest man and one not given to tall tales, many refused to believe his story. Several weeks later, over on the Verde River, the camel was spotted again, this time by another group of prospectors. They, too, saw something attached to the animals back. Grabbing their weapons they fired at the camel but missed. The animal bolted and ran, causing a piece of the strange object to fall to the ground. What the miners saw made the hair bristle on their necks. On the ground lay a human skull with some parts of flesh and hair still attached.
A few days later, the Red Ghost struck again. This time the victims were teamsters camped beside a lonely road. They said they were awakened in the middle of the night by a loud scream. According to the terrified drivers, a creature at least 30-feet-tall knocked over two freight wagons and generally raised hell with the camp. The men ran for their lives and hid in the brush. Returning the next day, they found cloven-hoof prints and red strands of hair.
About a year later, a cowboy near Phoenix came upon the Red Ghost eating grass in a corral. Traditionally, cowboys have been unable to resist the temptation to rope anything that wears hair, and this fellow was no exception. He built a fast loop in his rope and tossed it over the camels head. Suddenly the angry beast turned and charged. The cowboys horse tried to dodge, but to no avail. Horse and rider went down, and as the camel galloped off in a cloud of dust, the astonished cowboy recognized the skeletal remains of a man lashed to its back.
During the next few years, stories of the Red Ghost grew to legendary proportions. The creature made its last appearance nine years later in eastern Arizona. A rancher awoke one morning and saw the huge animal casually grazing in his garden. He drew a careful bead with his trusty Winchester and dropped the beast with one shot. An examination of the corpse convinced all that this was indeed the fabled Red Ghost. The animals back was heavily scarred from rawhide strips that had been used to tie down the body of a man. Some of the leather strands had cut into the camels flesh. But how the human body came to be attached to the back of the camel remains a cruel mystery.
Article from of Arizonaoddities.com
It’s hard to know if the dead buck was dead before or after the coyotes 1st encountered the two bucks locked up.
The current series called "The Walking Dead".........
Oh, thanks., I knew it was a movie I would not usually go see. I may read a book about it, but seeing and hearing it all is a different sensation. It’s a well staged scene, I have to complement the directors of body make up and for FX.
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