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Deer Have Been Caught Eating a Human Carcass

At least they haven’t started hunting humans.

For the first time ever, forensic scientists have caught deer eating a human carcass. Researchers at the Forensic Anthropology Research Facility in San Marcos, Texas were testing the effects of various scavengers of human remains when they caught the unexpected on camera. The research facility in Texas is completely dedicated to studying the decay of human remains what happens in the decomposition process.

In one round of testing, a body was placed in a wooded area with a trail camera over the corpse. Aside from the usual suspects of coyotes, raccoons, and vultures the camera captured a deer enjoying a snack. After being placed in the woods for around six months, one young deer started snacking on the ribs of the carcass. In fact, the deer came back for seconds a few days later (or another deer started eating the carcass, too).

Image via J Forensic Sci 2017
Image via J Forensic Sci 2017

If you think about it, this shouldn’t be too hard to wrap our heads around. It has been shown that one of the first animals to show up at gut piles are other deer. They have even been shown to lick the  remains. We all remember the video of the yearling eating the fish given to it by ice anglers. So realistically, a human carcass is just another carcass.

The current thought is that the deer will eat meat to gain minerals that have been missing from their diets. Minerals such as phosphorus, salt, and calcium. Which would explain why the deer in the images was going mostly after bones.

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Deer Have Been Caught Eating a Human Carcass