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So, deer eat birds now?

Old 03-04-2015, 02:53 PM
Typical Buck
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Default So, deer eat birds now?

I wonder if it tastes just like chicken to them?:

Esther Inglis-Arkell
Today 12:40pm

Field Cameras Catch Deer Eating BirdsóWait, Why Do Deer Eat Birds?

Deer aren't the slim, graceful vegans we thought they were. Scientists using field cameras have caught deer preying on nestling song birds. And it's not just deer. Herbivores the world over may be supplementing their diets.

When researchers in North Dakota set up "nest cams" over the nests of song birds, they expected to see a lot of nestlings and eggs get taken by ground squirrels, foxes, and badgers. Squirrels hit thirteen nests, but other meat-eaters made a poor showing. Foxes and weasels only took one nest each. Know what fearsome animal out-did either of those two sleek, resourceful predators?

White-tailed deer.

These supposed herbivores placidly ate living nestlings right out of the nest. And if you're thinking that it must be a mistake, that the deer were chewing their way through some vegetation and happened to get a mouthful of bird, think again. Up in Canada, a group of ornithologists were studying adult birds. In order to examine them closely, the researchers used "mist-nets." These nets, usually draped between trees, are designed to trap birds or bats gently so they could be collected, studied, and released. When a herd of deer came by, they deer walked up to the struggling birds and ate them alive, right out of the nets.

This behavior is not limited to one species or one continent. Last year, a farmer in India made a video of a cow eating a recently-hatched chick. Some scientists speculate that herbivores turn to meat when they're not getting enough nutrients in their diet. It's possible. A biologist in Scotland documented red deer eating seabird chicks, and concluded it was how they got the dietary boost necessary to grow their antlers. The same researcher also documented sheep eating the heads and legs off of seabird chicks. And then there's another cow in India, which reportedly ate fifty chickens. There may be a specific need that drives herbivores to occasionally eat meat. It's also possible, experts say, that eating meat, when it can't run away from them, is just something supposed "herbivores" do, and we're finally getting wise to it.

The famous line from The Simpsons might be accurate - If a cow ever got the chance, he'd eat you and everyone you ever cared about.



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Old 03-04-2015, 03:44 PM
Nontypical Buck
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its protein, that's what they need, how they know its protein is beyond me. knew a guy once who kept shed antlers on the porch of his cabin, they started coming up missing, he would find the odd one in the yard or in the woods closeby, chewed to pieces, when it snowed, only tracks coming up the steps were deer tracks, sheds were gone again

edited to add: just remembered this

Last edited by Ridge Runner; 03-04-2015 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 03-04-2015, 05:46 PM
Join Date: Sep 2014
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I read a study that was conducted in Florida, several years ago, filming quail nests to see what was preying on the eggs. One nest was hit by a doe, which ate the eggs. Squirrels were also culprits. No turkeys hit the nests.
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Old 03-04-2015, 07:31 PM
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Eggs taste great for breakfast....... that's what the animals tell me anyway - LOL !!!

I hear people tell me that same thing.

Last edited by Sheridan; 03-06-2015 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 03-04-2015, 09:23 PM
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Nothing new here. I have a large (one acre) bird sanctuary that I have used as a food plot for years.
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Old 03-05-2015, 03:39 AM
Typical Buck
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I guess deer are like people - they get weird at times!
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Old 03-05-2015, 05:06 AM
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I saw a movie once about carnivorous sheep in New Zealand who ate people.

Hey, even the people ate people in that part of the world
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Old 03-05-2015, 05:11 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Have seen videos and read articles of deer eating the antlers of another dead deer. Just have not found any videos of a deer trying to eat their own, but I do wonder if they chase their antler around in a circle like a dog chases his tail.
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Old 03-10-2015, 02:05 PM
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This is just creepy. Bambi gobbling down defenseless baby birds. My view of the world.. Changed.. Forever..
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Old 03-10-2015, 02:36 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Originally Posted by PaulaLindgren View Post
This is just creepy. Bambi gobbling down defenseless baby birds. My view of the world.. Changed.. Forever..
just about every warm blooded animal in the woods will eat baby birds, including other birds, even squirrels will dine on poultry if given a chance.
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