Man attacked by deer - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Man attacked by deer

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UMATILLA, Ore.—A man was attacked by a mule buck deer Thursday near McNary Dam in Oregon.

Oregon State Police say the victim was hiking with his wife when he stopped to take a photograph of the deer.  He got too close and the buck gouged his lower legs.  He was taken to Shepherds Medical Center.

A Wildlife Biologist says it is mating season for deer, which makes late October and November the worst time to get close. 

"During that time buck mule deer become aggressive. That likely played a significant role in the events that occurred yesterday," says Mark Kirsch, Wildlife Biologist.

Kirsch says the area is still safe.  Deer won't attack unless they feel threatened.  That means stay 30 feet or more away.

"These mule deer are use to seeing people. They are somewhat habituated to people so an aggressive response as apposed to a flight response is going to be more common," says Kirsch.

KNDU is told a hiker has never been attacked near the McNary Dam before.

Now the Oregon State Police and Fish and Wildlife are searching for the buck.  Once found, the deer will be euthanized and tested for disease.