Madison
15° F
Scattered Clouds
Scattered Clouds
Advertisement

Killing of white deer ignites controversy in Sauk County

Published On: Nov 20 2012 10:10:57 PM CST   Updated On: Nov 21 2012 06:23:55 AM CST
SAUK CITY, Wis. -

A hunter killed a rare white deer over the weekend, setting off a controversy in Sauk County.

Leland, which is about 15 miles northwest of Sauk City, is home to about eight white and albino deer. The deer are so rare that the town of avid hunters has formed a truce to keep them safe -- until this weekend, when an out-of-towner bagged a buck.

It was a legal kill. White and albino deer aren't protected in chronic-wasting disease zones. Also, the deer isn't true albino; it has a small dark spot on its rear, so it wouldn't be protected.

Does all this matter in Leland? Not for some local residents.

The handful of white and albino deer that call the area home are extremely rare creatures that locals refer to as treasures.

"The first one appeared probably nine years ago," said Leland resident Brandon Yanke. "You wouldn't believe the hundreds of people who come just to see those deer."

But word of a hunter killing a white deer over the weekend has spread fast, leaving locals at the town and avid hunters dismayed and upset.

"I was pissed (about the deer kill)," said resident Amy Sprecher. "I just can't understand how people can be so selfish -- not thinking about the beauty for everybody to share, how rare they are."

The white deer are so special to Sprecher that she has named them.

"This is a moral issue, completely, and it is really disappointing," Yanke said. "And that's kind of how we've all felt. It's so unique to have something like that around."

The locals said they can't believe anyone would kill one of the deer. The town has made a pact to protect the rare deer, especially the big buck that was shot by a hunter Saturday.

"Everybody says we're not going to shoot this deer. It's too special," Yanke said.

As for the hunters responsible for killing the buck, their camp was abandoned. Residents told WISC-TV that the hunters are from Fond du Lac and are planning to be back for more hunting this weekend.

"I hope they feel like they're a big strong hunter because they took out the white deer and stole it from everybody," Sprecher said.

Some avid hunters in town told WISC-TV that, legal or not, they would have let that buck go because of how rare and beautiful it was.

Residents said they want the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to do more to protect the rare deer even if they're not a full albino and even if they are in a CWD zone.

Advertisement
  • Titanic II

    Blue Star Line

    Titanic II: A look inside

    The new Titanic II will be practically identical to the original luxury liner, which famously sank in April 1912 after striking an iceberg on its maiden voyage. Here's a look inside the ocean liner, which is slated to sail in 2018.

  • Oregon occupiers

    CNN

    Oregon armed protesters: What to know

    The armed occupiers of a wildlife refuge in Oregon say they will turn themselves in on Thursday morning, hours after Cliven Bundy -- the father of protest leader Ammon Bundy -- was arrested by federal agents. Here is what to know about the group.

  • Couple holding hands

    iStock / kevinruss

    Best American cities for Valentine's Day

    Some cities are just more romantic than others, but which U.S. cities provide the best chance for some Valentine's Day romance without breaking the bank?

  • Audrey

    Audrey

    Look Who's 3

    Check out who's turning 3, and send in your photo.

  • Valentine's Day card

    Valentine's Day

    Gift ideas, getting in the mood, popping the question, recipes and ideas for kids, all in our special section dedicated to Valentine's Day.

  • heart--stethoscope--doctor--medical---21654271

    Healthy Heart

    Tips to stay heart healthy, reducing your risk of heart disease, advice and the latest research on heart health.

Advertisement