A singer was kicked by an ‘aggressive’ deer as she posed for photos in Richmond Park amid rutting season.
Gemma Louisianna, 28, had been taking part in a photoshoot for her music when a deer started eating food out of one of her bags. It then suddenly shoved her with its legs, leaving her with a sore back and ‘a few bruises’.
Stating that she was ‘terrified’, she quickly moved away from the deer, but a ranger then told her off for being ‘near’ the animals in rutting season. Gemma said she wasn’t aware of the season, which takes place between September and November each year.
She went on: ‘The ranger didn’t check if I was okay, and just walked away after telling me off and they just didn’t seem to care about what happened to me.
‘I walked through that park for hours every day when I was on furlough with my dogs, and now I’m a bit scared to go back after what happened and how I was treated.’
Gemma, who also works as an estate agent, denied approaching the deer, taking selfies with them or feeding them, as bystanders reportedly told the ranger.
A witness who lives close to Richmond Park told Metro.co.uk he saw Gemma posing for a photo ‘closer to the herd than I’d recommend’ before she was kicked by the deer.
He went on: ‘Normally deer are petty timid creatures but the stags have been quite randy due to the rutting season and are acting more aggressively than usual.
‘I saw a female deer coming up behind the woman and start rooting through her stuff. She tried to recover it and then the doe went up on her hind legs and kicked the woman in the back of her legs.
‘She was a bit shocked but seemed okay. In the end she had to back away and just wait until the doe lost interest in her belongings.’
Park manager Simon Richards told The Sun the deer were ‘wild and unpredictable animals’ and warned that members of the public should try and maintain a 50 metre distance from them, particularly in rutting season.
The period sees deer likely to clash antlers and attack one another in attempt to attract as many females as possible.
Mr Richards added: ‘It’s also important to stress that deer do not require feeding from the public. Both Richmond and Bushy Parks provide ample natural food for deer that are suited to their nutritional needs.
‘By feeding deer you are doing them more harm than good, and putting yourself in unnecessary danger at the same time.’
Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at [email protected]
For more stories like this, check our news page.