For you city folk who don't know what an 8 point buck is, it's a male deer with 4 points on each antler. That makes him a 4 year old, if I remember correctly. We have one hanging around the neighborhood. Not uncommon with peach trees in the backyard and a big pond next door, but rare to actually see them. Rhetta I don't think has ever seen any of the neighborhood deer. Until tonight. (That's the actual deer in the picture only in the neighbor's yard 2 days later.)
Rhetta and I were planting a pretty champagne poppy I got from our dear friend, Linda, out at Living Waters. She's got all her plants on sale as it's the end of the season so I have been getting one or two at a time from her at the farmer's market every Saturday. Rhetta has loved having things to plant! She shovels the dirt and holds the hose.
So tonight, as I went to turn on the water to the hose, I saw the buck about 100 feet down the driveway toward the back of our property. I had seen him in the street a few days ago and found tracks this morning all over my garden. I called Rhetta over and she came to my side (this is a feat in and of itself as she would normally protest loudly and stay where she was but lately has come quietly when I ask her) and pointed out the deer to her. It took a few seconds until she made it out as it stood very still, not even twitching an ear. I asked her, "Do you want to get a closer look? Go ahead."
She pranced, not walked, slowly forward about 20 feet, then another 20 feet, and the buck just stood there staring. Maybe he thought he was invisible? She pranced a bit closer - about even with the coop. Then still looking at the buck she pointed to the coop and said, "That's a chickens!" I guess she thought he had never seen chickens before?
She took a few more steps then waved at him. First with one hand then the other. She was trying to make friends! She took a few more steps and by now was only 30 or 40 feet from him which was close enough for him because that's when he turned tail and bounded off into the neighbors property with Rhetta hot on his heels, "Wait deer! COME BACK!"
I must say I was a little nervous because I have heard of deer charging, but I also knew he wasn't cornered so would most likely take off the way he did.
She didn't seem to disappointed afterward. She came back and we finished planted our flower. :)