Rare deer got mysteriously blind
Posted by Greeka on 15 Oct 2009
Deer of Dama-dama, the famous species that lives only in Rhodes and constitutes the symbol of the island, have been found blind from unknown, until now, reason. Dama dama deer has been declared as protected species and hunting is sharply forbidden. Because of the protective laws about them, their number has been raised up to 1000 the last years, but scientists insist that they are still in danger.
Recently forest rangers have noticed that some deer were moving like dazed and dizzy, hit themselves onto trees or even walk in the middle of the road. When they managed to hold them still, they realized they are blind. "We still don't know the reason that causes deer to get blind, it can be anything, even a insect bite", said the North Aegean forest inspector.
Another reason could also be a bacterium infection. Last Sunday, rangers managed to capture a blind deer and take it to the Park of Rhodes, to be examined by vets, in order to find the reason that causes their blindness. Deer blindness is very dangerous for their lives, since they are still running through the forest, hitting themselves on the trees and getting seriously injured. Not to mention the danger they are facing when they cross the road.
First tests prove that deer do not have any other health problems, apart from blindness. They keep their strength and liveliness. Some rangers insist that the blindness problem has been noticed to other mammals as well, but this is not yet confirmed. Since the real reason hasn't been found yet, specialist vets have been called from Thessaloniki to look over this strange issue.