British Columbia

Conservation officers on Vancouver Island save deer shot in the head with crossbow

Conservation officers on Vancouver Island have tracked down a deer that was shot with a crossbow and safely removed an arrow that was lodged in her head.
Conservation officers have asked that whoever shot the pregnant animal turn themselves in. (Heather Gardiner)

Conservation officers on Vancouver Island have tracked down a deer that was shot with a crossbow and safely removed an arrow that was lodged in her head.

A local resident called the officers on Tuesday after seeing the pregnant animal — who was a regular visitor to her Maple Bay property — with an arrow in its head. Hunting is illegal in the residential area.

Officers were called again on Wednesday after the deer appeared once more, this time with a newborn fawn alongside her.

The deer was spooked by the presence of the officers and took off into the bushes on both occasions — but three officers were able to catch up with her Thursday morning.

"We are able to track her down in the bushes and successfully get a dart into her with some drugs," said conservation officer Scott Norris. "The drugs took effect and she went down quite peacefully and we were able to pull the arrow from her face."

Norris said the officers were able to clean the wound and apply some antibiotic cream.

"Then we administered the reversal drug and she was able to get up and walk off."

Norris said the deer had a hole in her neck and a gash through her palate but seemed reasonably unshaken.

"We're hopeful that she won't get infected and that she'll make a full recovery."

Conservation officers are asking residents in the area, about 65 km north of Victoria, to keep an eye on the deer and her fawn and report any changes in behaviour.

Norris also had a direct message for the person who shot the deer.

"We'd like you to turn yourself in, own up to your mistake and face the consequences."

now