Watch for deer. Even when you’re armed.
A female deer in Wisconsin attacked a 72-year-old man who had wounded her with a crossbow, according to Action Reporter Media in Fond du Lac, Wis.
Fond du Lac Sheriff’s Sgt. Jeff Bonack told the newspaper that the man — who was not identified — shot the doe with his crossbow Friday and returned later that evening to track down the animal.
That’s when the doe struck back.
“Apparently, the man was going through some thick brush and the deer leaped out and went after him,” Bonack told the paper. “The doe struck him in the leg with her head.”
The man, who was hunting with family, was taken to the hospital and his condition remains unknown, the paper reported.
Deer aren’t normally pegged as the type of animal to go after people — but they can show aggression, especially male deer during mating season. A rash of 2005 California attacks by bucks against pets and people tending to gardens confused wildlife officials, who said that such incidents were highly unusual but could be a sign that deer were getting too crowded and too accustomed to the presence of humans.
“We have more white-tailed deer now than we have ever had in the history of the country,” Todd Smith, editor in chief of Outdoor Life, told ABC News at the time. “So it’s not surprising we’re having more encounters. When deer and people meet, stuff’s going to happen.”
For a couple of years after that, some Southern Illinois University students, staff and police were attacked by female does during fawning season, when mothers are particularly protective of offspring. One student even sued the school over an attack, accusing the university of not doing enough to prevent it. Officials later thought the attacks may have been the work of a single, aggressive doe.
Then there’s Lynn Chestnut and the viral video of his fight with a male buck. He had wanted to make an impressive hunting video for his friends, so he doused himself with female deer urine so he could attract a buck.
“I do kind of overdo it and you’re not supposed to spray your body with it,” Chesnut explained on a 2008 episode of Animal Planet’s “When Animals Strike.”
He went on: “It is pretty dangerous to do that because they get there and find out it’s not what they expected, and it kind of ticks them off.”
It definitely did. Here’s that footage:
Chestnut managed to escape with minor injuries.