The power of these deer is incredible to drag a dead deer around for a few days. On November 6, a relative, Dona Viereck, called to tell us that she was driving to Canton , South Dakota and had seen a buck in the distance with his head down. It wasn't moving, and although she honked the car horn repeatedly, he wouldn't raise his head.
She grabbed her binoculars and looked at him, and saw that the buck's horns were entangled with those of another one, which was dead. So she called us and asked if we wanted an adventure -- untangling the animals! Well, we went, pronto!!! I took my camera and we walked right up to them.
They were tangled in an old fence line just east of a golf course, where some railroad tracks had been.. The live buck was on the high side, and the dead buck on the slope. The other buck had been dead for 2 or 3 days, we estimated.
Terry attempted to break a point off the dead buck's rack with his pliers, but couldn't. He tried turning the dead buck's head but the other one just became more frightened and started backing up.
The live buck had the bigger rack - a 5 x 6. The dead buck was bigger bodied and looked to be an older deer. It had more "stickers" on its rack.
The now scared buck eventually got out of the fence, and out in the open.. Terry pulled an old post out of the fence line and used it to try and pry the racks loose, but it didn't work.
We finally decided to go to a friend's house in order to borrow his chainsaw, but then we thought something quieter would be better, and so got a hacksaw instead. Terry sawed the main beam on the dead buck and then other one was free!
The buck didn't realize this for probably 30 seconds or so. When he did, he started striking the dead buck in the face repeatedly.
He finally raised his head a little, and then a little more. He stood there with his head held high looking at both of us and we wondered if he were going to try charging us too! Then he turned and ran off rather wobbly. He went a short distance, lay down briefly, and then got up and took off in the direction of the Big Sioux River.