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Swamp Buck With Extraordinarily Long Hooves
February 5, 2010
All ungulates (grazing herbivore mammals with hooves) grow hooves like all mammals grow fingernails or hair. It is the same collagen protein material for all mammals, and it grows every day through life. Humans have to cut their fingernails and cut their hair. Mammals in the wild normally wear their hooves down by running and walking over rough surfaces like dirt or rocks. What happens if you are a "swamp" buck, and there is no dirt or rocks to constantly wear down your hooves? Well, this happens! Spend your life running on wet grass and slimy mud that is not abrasive enough, and your hooves become a death sentence and will debilitate your mobility and reproduction. I'm surprised that deer that live in that environment don't chew their hooves down when they realize they are becoming a problem, like some people chew their fingernails. Pretty interesting...Nice buck! Nice antlers!
Swamp buck with elongated hooves


Special thanks to Toivo for sending me this gem...


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