Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Piebald Deer – Rare Natural Marvels

If you happen to be hiking in the woods and suddenly see a flash of white and something that appears to be a small deer, do not worry you are not imagining things. You are one of the few people that have been fortunate enough to witness a piebald deer in the wild.

So, what is a piebald deer? While a significant portion of their coat may be white, a piebald deer is not an albino. Lacking any pigmentation, albino deer are entirely white with pink eyes. Albino deer are exceedingly rare, some estimates put their numbers at around 20,000. The piebald condition results from an inherited genetic abnormality that leads to white patches of hair on certain areas of the body. There is no set pattern and the amount of white and brown varies from deer to deer.

While many piebald deer are born healthy with symptoms that do not impact their day-to-day lives, others are born with varying degrees of abnormalities. These may include bowing of the nose, short legs, curved spine, shortened lower jaw, or deformed hooves.

You may find yourself wondering how rare piebald deer are. The answer is, very. It is estimated that only 1 to 2 percent of the white-tailed deer population are affected with the piebald condition. No matter what the exact number, it is a unique privilege to view this extraordinary animal.

Piebald Deer in crate
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