Deer and Mosquitos

We had a visitor yesterday afternoon. It was young deer one of last year’s fawns. This is the time of year when the yearlings leave their mothers and head out on their own and a lot of them don’t make it. Cars, illness, parasites and starvation take many.

Deer

The first thing I noticed about this poor deer was that it was covered with literally hundred, perhaps thousands, of feeding mosquitos. The dark markings on the face were not markings. They were clouds of mosquitos. Its legs and belly were spotted with mosquitos full of blood at least one per square centimetre. To the mosquito, a deer is a walking buffet. It was obvious the poor thing was in distress. It would occasionally shake and try to rub its face on the leaves but the mosquitos were relentless. I don’t see how so many mosquitos could feed without making the poor deer anemic.

People who live in the city tend to think of nature as this idyllic place where deer and antelope roam about freely, munching on grass and playing in open fields, or sleeping in a nice spot in sunshine and a light breeze. Hunters are evil brutes who shoot Bambi’s mom. However, the truth is that nature is far more brutal and cruel than any human being. It’s already a mosquito-eat-deer world where most creatures die as babies. There is nothing romantic or free or nice about the natural world. It’s a war of survival with death at every step, often a slow agonizing death. All our fancy human adaptations such as screens, mosquito repellant, air conditioning, clothing, and medicine are what makes our own lives bearable and comfortable. Without our trappings of civilization, we would be as miserable as that poor deer most of the time if we survived at all. I, for one, am glad we have our trappings of civilization. I have no desire to live that close to nature because nature is such a bitch.

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