Photographer captures unusual sight of deer resting on a Gulf Coast beach

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Photo by Craig Carper

No it’s not a reindeer, but it sure is an unusual site.

Craig Carper caught this beautiful shot of a deer resting on the sand at Inlet Beach near Panama City, Florida, on the Gulf Coast. After the picture made an appearance on Facebook, some people were speculating that it was Photoshoped, but Craig assures us it absolutely was not.

Beach Maniac spoke with a ranger at Camp Helen State Park, where the picture was taken, who said it’s not unusual to see deer on the beach or even swimming in the water there. He said it’s possible this deer had just come in from the water and was a little worn out.

“This was one of the craziest things I’ve ever seen,” Craig wrote on his Flickr page.

He said he was just was walking along the beach when he saw the deer ahead and slowly made his way closer. Surprisingly, the deer did not scamper away. “I’m using my 24-70mm lens so this is already at a relatively close distance,” Craig wrote.

“A bunch of people started coming up and taking pictures and a few us were worried about him because he was shivering. I got very close and saw that he didn’t appear to be injured. My Dad went down to the park ranger’s office and they said the deer had been in and out of the water all day, each time going for a very vigorous swim. I imagine now that it’s getting dark he’ll make his way back to the woods.”

Craig got such a good response to this and other photos he took of the deer that he created Christmas cards, which are available at:

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One comment to Photographer captures unusual sight of deer resting on a Gulf Coast beach

  • Lynn Carper  says:

    What a beautiful picture this is, Craig. I keep checking with Camp Helen State Park and they think the deer is fine. I will never forget that day.

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