A deer hunter never expects to see giant warts or tumor-like growths on a white-tailed deer, but they do occur. Cutaneous fibromas (warts) are caused by a naturally occurring virus of the deer’s skin.
The take home message today is that warts occur naturally in white-tailed deer populations. Shot a dear in New Jersey wildlife management area middle of the state warts all over its body eating away at its ear. However, sometimes the growth of the wart can indirectly cause problems by restricting the consumption of food or the deer’s breathing.
While I was skinning him I noticed he had a tumor on his neck and beside it there was a black thing that looked like cancer.


I had some farmed deer that had them and I had to dart him and tie fishing line tightly around the base of the wart to shut off the blood supply And they dropped off after awhile. I had never seen one like this before, so I called the Game Warden to tell him about it and he said it had this viral skin decease and didn’t even care to see it, so I buried her yesterday.
Although death from fibromas in deer can occur, death from warts is not always imminent it seems.
As the warts increase in size, the skin surrounding them is typically hairless and grayish in color. Although the meat of a deer is typically not affected, most hunters that harvest a deer with a large number of warts are hesitant to put the meat in the freezer. The number of warts on an infected animal can vary from one to several hundred, they can sometimes clump, and can in some cases end up covering much of the deer’s body.


What concerns me is that I have been observing white tail deer since the 50s and the warts were rarely if ever seen back then. I’ve read some research that found a buck with warts also had internal and cancerous fibromasts. As the years have gone by, these warts have become quite common or rampant, which makes me wonder what has happened to their immune systems, or what insects are carrying the bite or whatever causes the wart, or is it a genetic weakness that predisposes the deer to be unable to fight the virus, or is there a DNA change that has weakened the species.



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