While Victorian hunters are still locked down, a sambar stag has decided to check out the ghost town of Melbourne.
The sambar stag was spotted running scared through the streets of Fitzroy in Melbourne’s inner north.
Once the distressed deer was caught, it was assessed by vets and euthanised.
The ABC reported “Simon, who lives in Collingwood, had just gone out for coffee when he saw the deer while he was stopped at a red light at the intersection of Johnson and Smith streets on Saturday morning”.
“I was like ‘oh my God, there’s a bloody deer running across the road looking pretty distressed’,” he told the ABC.
“By pure chance it happened to be running across when there was a red light and running in the direction of the lane that it was in as well.
“It seemed to have a bit of traffic sense really.”
He said the deer was pretty large, with antlers “that would’ve done some damage” and very dark brown fur.
Barry Howlett from the Australian Deer Association said
“[The deer’s] instinct is flight and it would’ve been just a complete sensory overload with the smell and the sound,” Mr Howlett said.
“It would’ve been a very young and confused animal.
“It would have been a far more challenging situation on a normal Saturday morning.”
Mr Howlett said said it was likely a male Sambar deer which had travelled from the peri-urban fringe along the Yarra River in search of a partner.
Mr Howlett said euthanising the animal was the most humane course of action.
“It’d be very difficult to effectively sedate it and then you’d have the problem that it’s actually illegal to release these animals in the wild anyway,” he said.
Fingers crossed that the lockdown comes to an end shortly and the Melbourne hunters can get back out there chasing these deer down.