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Deer gnawing/scavenging bones #8233996 04/12/21 09:05 PM
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JRSUSMC94 Offline OP
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I just came upon this article from Texas State's Forensic Anthropology Center where they study the natural decay of human remains.

Apparently, they caught some whitetail deer on camera chewing on some of the bones out there.

I'd seen the video of the deer eating a bird, heard of squirrels eating baby birds, and things like that, but I've never heard of deer scavenging bones.

Was curious if some of you that have spent a lot of time watching deer had ever seen anything like this, I found it kind of interesting.

This link has the abstract for the paper and a poster with the photographic evidence. It's not super graphic, but they are human bones, so use your best judgment.

https://www.researchgate.net/public..._White-Tailed_Deer_Gnawing_on_Human_Bone

Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8234015 04/12/21 09:24 PM
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Dave Davidson Online Content
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Never seen deer gnawing on bones.


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Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley, Rancher Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8234119 04/12/21 10:35 PM
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kmon11 Online Shocked
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i have seen a couple bucks gnawing on old shed antlers that were already bleached white. figured those wanted more calcium. Both times was during turkey season when the new antlers were just growing good.


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Mainstream news might be fun to watch
Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: kmon11] #8234144 04/12/21 11:00 PM
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Originally Posted by kmon1
i have seen a couple bucks gnawing on old shed antlers that were already bleached white. figured those wanted more calcium. Both times was during turkey season when the new antlers were just growing good.


Bingo.

Nature tells animals what to eat/crave.

I've had rancher friends have to remove bones from cattle because they were stuck in their mouth, and couldn't eat or drink in that situation. It goes bad really quick if you don't catch them, and remove the stuck bone.

Usually means a phosphorus deficiency.

Feeding mineral should stop that problem.... in deer, cattle or whatever.

Last edited by BbarVRanch; 04/12/21 11:02 PM.
Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8234236 04/13/21 12:38 AM
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Michael W. Offline
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A couple years ago I was headed down south of San Antonio and passed a group of cattle standing knee deep in an old burn pile. Looked like they were eating/licking the ashes. I assumed it was some mineral they were needing.



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Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8234503 04/13/21 10:22 AM
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Yep, kmon is bingo

Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: BbarVRanch] #8234512 04/13/21 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by BbarVRanch
Originally Posted by kmon1
i have seen a couple bucks gnawing on old shed antlers that were already bleached white. figured those wanted more calcium. Both times was during turkey season when the new antlers were just growing good.


Bingo.

Nature tells animals what to eat/crave.



How did nature figure out that my wife's chocolate cake was a legit craving? clap


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Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8234515 04/13/21 10:51 AM
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Dimitri Offline
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Once came upon a steenbuck eating the sand in a dry riverbed. Always figured that there was some mineral in the sand that the steenbuck needed or enjoyed. Porcupines in SA often carry bones to their dens and gnaw on them there.

Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: Hudbone] #8234903 04/13/21 04:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Hudbone
Yep, kmon is bingo

up


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Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: Michael W.] #8235984 04/14/21 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael W.
A couple years ago I was headed down south of San Antonio and passed a group of cattle standing knee deep in an old burn pile. Looked like they were eating/licking the ashes. I assumed it was some mineral they were needing.

we see wildlife and farm animals around old burn piles regularly.....Definitely something there they like....

Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8236002 04/14/21 03:54 PM
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I have seen cows chewing on bones and old antlers.


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Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8236561 04/14/21 11:29 PM
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I have seen a few deer chew on old bones and even shed antlers before. Any animal that is lacking some mineral, trace mineral or vitamin in its diet will seek a plant or soil site or other source to replenish what they need. Deer antlers will have about 20%+ calcium, 10% phosphorus, and then some magnesium, sodium, sulfur, and a combination of iron, zinc, copper, aluminum, potassium, manganese and other elements. A lot of what is in an antler will depend on what is readily available in the native vegetation or soil where they live. Also, what is supplemented to them with mineral licks or protein pellets can effect how much mineral is in the antler. A hardened deer antler with have from 35%-45% protein in it also.


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Re: Deer gnawing/scavenging bones [Re: JRSUSMC94] #8236635 04/15/21 12:23 AM
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Thank y'all for the answers. It's all pretty fascinating stuff.

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