Man killed and woman badly injured after attack by pet deer

Man dies in deer attack in Victoria

Man dies in deer attack in Victoria

A man has died in a deer attack in north east Victoria and a woman has been seriously injured.

Paul and Mandi McDonald, 45, were at their Moyhu farm, about 260km from Melbourne, on Wednesday morning when the tragedy occurred.

Ambulance Victoria said Mrs McDonald was flown to the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne in a serious condition where she is fighting for her life. The family had kept the animal for about two years.

"It's a very, very short sharp season where they get aggressive and fight with each other", said David Voss from Australian Deer Association, a hunters' lobby group.

Autumn is mating, or rutting, season for many species of deer, and is a particularly risky time to be around the wild animals.

As many as a million wild deer are thought to be living in Victoria, according to a 2017 state government report.

Howlett said that deer can become a danger to humans in domesticated scenarios.

A recent study into the number of deaths caused by animals in Australia from 2000 to 2013 recorded no fatal deer attacks, according to its author. "There is a large family network and the [people] we've spoken to... it's beyond words how affected they are by this incident".

But feral populations have since expanded across the country with increasing calls for greater controls in many areas where they are considered a pest.

He said the deer was a cross between a Red Deer and an Elk, known as a Wapiti.

Parks Victoria classifies deer - which are not native to Australia - as a threat to vegetation in national parks.

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