Deer

Asked April 9, 2016, 2:22 PM EDT

This deer has never lost its horns,they are weird shape,cannot see male parts on it, believe it is 3-4 years old as it has been here at least that many years, am wondering if it may be crossed with something else?

Coos County Oregon

2 Responses

Thank you for attaching a photo. The antlers look like they might still carry velvet (hair-covered skin), which would be even more unusual. There are quite a few conditions that could result in what you're observing. If it is a male animal, the potential failure to drop velvet and subsequent failure to shed the antlers could arise from an injury, potentially to the testes but not limited to that option, could be a result of a significant nutritional or metabolic imbalance, or could even be the result of a tumor's influence on the pituitary or other hormone-regulating gland. Another option raised by your comment about not noting other male sex characters, is that this could be a female with an ovarian (or possibly pituitary) tumor. In either of those cases, the "clumpy" development of the antlers may reflect multiple years of growth with no shedding. Do you happen to have pictures of the same animal from previous years? It's an interesting animal, for sure! I'm sure your District Biologist with Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife would be interested to have a chance to observe this animal - simply because there is something interesting going on with that individual. It otherwise looks to be in good body condition, and there's no need to fear it having any sort of disease that would spread, etc.
I hope this information is helpful.
Dana

There is no velvet on the horns..thought maybe it might be crossed with something from a ranch in powers, Or. That let some exotic animals loose a few years back.