Learn the truth about this ultra rare black whitetail fawn.
The origins of this viral black fawn dates back to August 2010 when a email made the rounds stating,
"True or photo shopped?
Don't ask me where this was taken at, some where for sure....This is a first for me to see this.... PICTURES OF A BLACK FAWN "
After some digging, we found where the photos were taken and why this "whitetail fawn" is actually black.
Why is this fawn black? It's due to a rare genetic color variation that is even more uncommon than albinism known as melanistic. Essentially, their bodies produce a surplus of melanin in their hair, skin, and retina pigment.
North American Whitetail considers this to be "the rarest of the rare. While millions of whitetails have been harvested across the continent in modern times, only a token number of cases of melanism have been documented."
Most of these anomalies happen in the southwest where most of the cover is dark brush. Some biologists believe the rare genetic trait could be an advantage to protect themselves from prey.
Coincidentally, the rare black fawn was photographed near Austin, Texas. The photographer, Richard Burquoi commented to Snopes about his pictures that later went viral. The images were taken in May of 2010 and capture a pair of twins with their mother in the Greenbelt neighborhood.
The photos were even featured in 2010 September edition of "Deer and Deer Hunting" magazine.
Check out Richard's full photo collection of the black fawn and many other breath taking photos on his website.
All images via © R.M Buquoi Photographics