Rare white deer turning heads near Halifax
A rare type of deer with nearly all-white fur has been turning heads in Nova Scotia in recent weeks.
The white deer, known as a piebald, gets its white fur from a rare genetic mutation. Halifax-area residents have spotted the little white fawn and its mother wandering around town.
In late September, Middle Sackville couple Bruce and Elaine Stearman saw the fawn across the street from their home.
"I looked out and thought I saw a goat," Bruce told CTV Atlantic.
The couple looked a little closer, and saw its mother in the middle of the road.
After the Stearmans snapped a few photos, the mother and her fawn wandered into the woods.
A week later, the pair was spotted a few kilometres away in Lucasville.
While the fawn’s white coat can make it an easier target for predators, there are also concerns that the pair is spending time too close to busy Highway 101.
"(I'm) hoping nobody's driving too fast up the road here," Bruce Stearman said. "It would be a shame to have it get hit."
Andrew Hebda, the curator of zoology at Nova Scotia’s Museum of Natural History, says he has seen photographic evidence of piebalds in Cumberland County dating back nearly 100 years.
Reports this season suggest that there are "at least three" piebalds in the area now, Hebda said.
More than one piebald in the same area suggests the deer population is currently very high.
Elaine Stearman is hoping that the fawn she spotted outside her home can make it through hunting season.
"Hopefully they will make it through the winter and grow to be strong and healthy."
With a report from CTV Atlantic’s Jayson Baxter