David sent me this link and asked what I thought of it.
First, I’ve seen a lot of live turkeys attack dead gobblers on the ground, but I have never seen a buck do it. I attribute it to the craziness of the rut—testosterone-addled bucks do weird and unexplainable things. This attacking buck is also an especially aggressive young deer (I believe bucks have “personalities” like people do; some are bold and aggressive, others more passive).
Second, those guys took the encounter way too flippantly. This was not a joking matter. At any minute that wild and rut-crazed buck could have pounced and attacked with lowered rack and flailing hooves. As fired-up as that deer was, it could have been bloody or even fatal.
I believe the right thing to do in that situation would have been to back off, hide behind trees and watch and enjoy the show…the attacker would have eventually gotten bored and walked off, as he eventually did, with not much damage to the dead buck.
What would you have done?