ROGERSVILLE, Mo. — Ryan Eagleburger sent this photo to KOLR10 over the weekend of what he called “a black deer” near Rogersville.
Some believed the animal was just an Elk while others googled is there even such a thing as a black deer?
Well, we thought we should let the experts decide, so we turned to the department of conservation for answers.
Game biologists believe this photo is actually of a “Sika” Deer.
It’s not native to Missouri, but is usually found in East Asia and is known to be imported to other countries.
The giveaway is the deer’s dark coat and a big set of antlers.
The conservation department says they already got several calls about a black deer in the Rogersville area.
They think the deer must have escaped from someone’s farm.
But for all you would-be hunters out there, this one is off limits!
MO DEPT. OF CONSERVATION
“If you look in your regulations book, it says white-tailed or mule deer are legal to take in Missouri,” Francis Skalicky said, with the Missouri Department of Conservation. “Well this is not either one of those, this is a Sika deer. So it’s not actually a legal harvest. So if you see it, just enjoy it. Do what everybody else has been doing. Take a photo, take a video. If you know who owns it, call them. Because like I say, this is obviously escaped from somebody’s farm. But it’s just one of those oddities every now and then shows up in Missouri.”
Skalicky says if the animal was an Elk it would have had a dark cape but a lighter body.
He also says if you could get close enough to the deer it may have spots on its body.