That Viral Video Of The Young Deer That Did A Smackdown Of A Hawk That Was Attacking A


A recent viral video caused a lot of head-scratching and rapt wonderment.

It provides a breathtaking story, entirely seen visually and absent of any narration (thankfully so, allowing for our uninterrupted attention to the altogether moving pictorial saga itself).

Let me walk you through the action as though your perchance happened upon the video while otherwise perusing your usual dose of social media. Assume that you came upon the video on a random basis and opt somewhat leisurely to click on it, mainly out of curiosity about why it has garnered so many views.

The opening scene consists of a seemingly pleasant and innocuous green pasture that is surrounded by a lush forest. Grass in the untamed pasture has grown relatively high, providing for a bit of hiding coverage for any petite-sized animals that might opt to go out into this verdant open space.

A rabbit has ventured out into the grassy area.

If you are thinking what I think you are thinking, you are right that the rabbit is about to get a rather unpleasant surprise. Please prepare yourself accordingly for what happens next.

Out of view of the fixed-in-place video camera (affixed to a tree or some such supporting structure), a hawk must have been flying in the sky above the pasture. All that we know and catch a fleeting glimpse of is an ominous shadowy figure that shockingly and surprising swoops down upon the rabbit. It happens in an eye-blinking split second.

One moment the rabbit is hopping along without a care in the world, and the next moment it finds itself in the clutches of fearsome talons.


The hawk is doing what hawks do.

While this nimbly flying creature is now on the ground, it is trying to voraciously turn the rabbit into a tasty meal. A mighty struggle ensues. The prey is desperately trying to fight back against the determined predator. We hear the faint and frantic squealing of panicked cries coming from the rabbit as it does whatever it can to getaway. The odds though of escaping are extremely slim.

Hawks have fine-tuned this kind of predatory machination and the rabbit is presumably and inexorably not long for this earth, sadly so.

But wait for a second, this story has only just begun.

Out of nowhere, a young deer suddenly scampers into the pasture. We aren’t sure what this deer has in mind. It sprints in a circular fashion around the engrossed hawk and rabbit. Is the deer going to take a close look at the life-or-death battle underway? Will the deer merely scamper back out of the pasture and leave the struggling pair to whatever ends that destiny or fate shall decide.

Get ready to drop your jaw and become utterly mesmerized by what happens next.

The young deer attacks the hawk.

Say what?

Yes, the deer attacks the hawk.

One kind of doubts that the hawk was giving much due to the deer, prior to that moment, and logically assumed that the deer would simply move along. It seems likely that hawks quite frequently might perform ferocious attacks on small animals and be amidst larger animals while doing so. It also seems likely that those larger animals would tend to scurry away and not want to get involved in someone else’s fight.

Who can blame them? Self-preservation would seem to be the axiomatic approach for any nearby observing animals. Those larger animals have their own set of predators to be worrying about.

That being said, if an eagle was possibly flying around, it might relish seeing the hawk on the ground. Eagles are considered predators of hawks. We would not be especially surprised if an eagle took advantage of the hawk as the ground-based struggle was taking place. The eagle would be all too happy to catch the hawk unawares.

But a deer opting to intervene, well, you’ve got to admit that is something unexpected and assuredly astonishing.

But there’s more!

The rabbit manages to escape from the hawk. This indubitably makes sense. That hawk is now being pounced upon and being ransacked by the young deer.

This is one heck of a beat down by the deer. As some have stated, we watch as Bambi seemingly transforms into Rambo. The hawk tries to get away, fluttering its wings and going toe-to-toe with the deer. Vicious fisticuffs are at work here.

If the deer had done this to simply distract the hawk, the job was completed. Excellent work. The rabbit was free and seemed to entirely get away, hopping anxiously back into the wooded area where the hawk would have little chance of rediscovering the prey. For the deer, it was time to call it quits, one would assume, and the deer could merrily move on and pat itself on the back for having done a good deed and preserved an itty-bitty rabbit’s life.

And yet the battle further ensues.

For several long minutes, the hawk and the deer go at it, fiercely. This is far more than an attempt by the deer to scare the hawk or startle the hawk into having given up the rabbit stew that was on the plate for today’s dining. We don’t know for sure what the two have got going here. The deer is absolutely determined to do what it can to dispense with the hawk.

Think about that famous fictional character known as the Hulk, and how there is a sudden transformation from one moment being relatively withdrawn and reserved, which then metamorphizes into this muscular overpowering hulking thing. That’s what seems to take place with this deer.

Eventually, we can see that the hawk is becoming less and less combative. The deer has clearly prevailed. Some have suggested that the hooves of deer can have sharpened edges that are akin to polished knives. The fact that the hawk was pinned to the ground by the deer and pummeled and slashed at by the hooves, you would certainly expect that the hawk would lose that kind of a streetfight skirmish.

Toward the end of the video, another similarly sized deer enters the pasture. As this newcomer approaches the conquering deer that has taken to task the hawk, the victorious deer momentarily moves menacingly toward the approaching interloper, getting the interloper to back off. This recurs a couple of times. One interpretation is that the triumphant deer does not want to share its hard-fought winning spoils. There are other possible interpretations too.

That is the gist of the video and we are then left to our own devices to decide what we have just witnessed.

I’d wager that it is a rock-solid bet that most people would be completely taken aback by the idea that a deer would not only attempt to shoo away a hawk that is already in the middle of a battle with a rabbit, but even more so that the deer would continue long after the initial disruptive action had succeeded. The myriad of posted comments reinforces that incredulous notion.

What’s up with that?

We think of deer as herbivores. They love to munch on leaves and plants. We see them idly grazing around in pastures and forests. Perhaps that’s what adds to our beloved adorability of deer. I dare say that nearly all of those Saturday morning cartoons and ongoing animated portrayals of deer seem to stridently abide by that preordained script.

Before you read the next paragraph, I will warn you that it isn’t going to proffer pleasant news. You might want to skip around it.

Scientists emphasize that deer are considered omnivorous, and thus they will indeed eat meat (whoa, exalted gasp!). This is somewhat rare for deer to do. Usually, the deer would have to be quite hungry. Furthermore, the situation would typically need to present itself on a silver platter, such as if the deer came upon a ground-based bird’s nest and realized there were defenseless hatchlings to be had. Generally, whatever meat might be eaten has to be easily made into munchable morsels since deer do not have the usual natural equipment for the arduous ordeal of eating raw meat.

Sorry if that ruins your dreamy imagery of deer.

We are now ready to take a running leap at how to interpret the video.

Some argue that the deer was aggressively hungry. It saw that the hawk was vulnerable and distracted. The deer calculated that this was the perfect moment to get a nearly free meal. All it had to do was a sneak attack on the hawk, thus the basis for going around at the first encounter, and the rest would be glorious history.

Maybe so, some concede.

But the hawk was still active, alive, and proving demonstrably that it could put up a fight. That’s not at all like going after an animal that might be a hatchling or perhaps already injured and possibly feeble. Trying to go at a hawk that was amid battle status would seem poorly calculated and doesn’t provide a convincing case, they counterargue. Plus, the grassy area and surrounding forest appeared to be replete with tons of food for the deer, unlike if it were the dead of winter and food sources were covered in deep snow.

Here’s another take.

The deer heard the cries of the rabbit. It is conceivable that those cries are similar sounding to those of a fawn. The deer rushed to save what was believed to be a fellow deer. Running past the two, the deer realized it was simply a hawk and a rabbit. Nonetheless, now that the deer was close enough and judged that the upper hand was now at play, the deer decided to pounce on the hawk.

There are multiple variations of that version. Perhaps the deer and the rabbit were already friendly toward each other and had earlier bonded. If that wasn’t the case, it could be a natural instinct that the deer and a rabbit would have toward each other, regardless if they had ever met before. And so on.

Hang onto your hat, there are more interpretations to be considered.

Maybe this particular deer was ticked off at hawks, either this specific one or at hawks in general. It could be that a hawk had previously attacked a fawn and this deer was either the one attacked or that…


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