Encountering a piebald deer is a pretty rare thing.
For residents who live around the Cleveland Metroparks area, however, it seems to be a little more common. As a matter of fact, this very piebald deer has grown quite popular recently (some might even say to celebrity status), and for good reason.
As seen directly from the Cleveland Metroparks Facebook page, hundreds of shares and comments filled the page as soon as the picture hit the Internet.
The photo was captioned:
Is it a cow? Is it a pinto pony? No, it’s a piebald deer. This unique coloration is caused by a rare genetic variation and occurs in less than one percent of the white-tailed deer population. Piebald deer are more commonly seen than albino deer, a recessive trait in which the individual lacks the gene responsible for all pigmentation. Piebalds still have brown eyes, dark noses and hoofs, and the amount of white varies with each individual. There is evidence that piebalds display more birth defects like scoliosis, short legs, and internal organ deformities, and could be a result of overpopulation. This piebald deer was photographed recently in Cleveland Metroparks. Have you ever seen a piebald deer?
Photo courtesy of Mike Giraldo
With over 23,000 acres of land, including 18 reservations and five nature centers throughout the park system, the odds of even seeing this deer are low. However, its celebrity status is only on the rise!