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Cows adopt baby deer orphaned by hunters

A YOUNG deer christened Bambi has been adopted by a herd of cattle at a farm and now thinks it is a calf.

A farmer is feeding the deer alongside her cattle after it arrived on the farm earlier this year.

Alyce O'Neill, of Castleoliver Farm at Ardpatrick, Co Limerick said the animal had become well accustomed to the herd and had even suckled from the cows.

"We went out one morning and he was there in the field with the cattle and, of course, we have named him Bambi," Mrs O'Neill said. "He was obviously very young because he was suckling from the cows.

"For the first few days, he would run in under the fence into the forest but then he started to get to know us and he was coming closer to us all the time."

It is suspected that the deer's mother was shot by hunters and he made his way to the cattle for survival.