Craig One man's hunting trip took a dangerous turn this weekend when a wounded buck deer gored him approximately 15 miles south of Craig.
The incident occurred Sunday near Hamilton, said Randy Hampton, Colorado Division of Wildlife spokesman. A member of the hunting party took the injured man to The Memorial Hospital in Craig.
The victim was later transported to St. Mary's Hospital in Grand Junction.
The Memorial Hospital was unable to release the victim's name. St. Mary's said the Health Insurance Portability and Privacy Act prevented the release of the man's condition.
Hampton said the man sustained considerable injuries.
The victim was hunting with at least one other person when the accident occurred. A member of the hunting party shot the buck deer, which then went down.
When the man approached the animal, it "jumped up and gored him," Hampton said.
Whether the injured man or another member of the hunting party shot the animal remains unclear, Hampton said.
Hampton cautioned against approaching wounded animals.
"If you're dealing with an animal that's not killed, you're dealing with a wounded animal - and wounded animals can be extremely dangerous," Hampton said.
An accident report is pending, at which time the victim's name may be released.
"We will do an accident report on (the incident) when we get an opportunity to speak to the victim," he said.
The Division of Wildlife is usually not informed of injuries inflicted by wild animals, Hampton said.
"If a tree falls in the forest, no one calls the Forest Service to say the trees are out of control," Hampton said. "It's the same with us."
Hampton said it's difficult to estimate how often these types of incidents occur. Still, he said gorings requiring emergency medical services are uncommon.
"This is probably the most significant (hunting-related) incident of this kind in the four years I've been here," Hampton said.
Deer have been known to become aggressive and attack humans, especially during the rutting season.
"We've had people gored in their backyards," Hampton said.
Yet, the animals infrequently retaliate against hunters.
"Defensive, wounded animals are rare," Hampton said.
Bridget Manley can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 207, or firstname.lastname@example.org