A northern New York man is recovering after being attacked by a 10-point buck while he was loading firewood. Authorities said Gerald Dabiew, 56, was cut and bruised from head-to-toe by the buck outside his house in Moira, 200 miles north of Albany.
"He got me down on the ground, and it was then I knew that he really wanted to kill me," Dabiew told The Watertown Daily Times.
Dabiew's house is surrounded by woods, so he didn't think twice Friday when he saw the buck crossing the road _ until the animal charged and knocked him down.
Dabiew wrapped his legs around the animal's neck and held onto its antlers as it battered him. Every time Dabiew tried to wrestle himself loose, the buck would ram him again, he said. The attack on Friday lasted several minutes before the buck ran off.
"I don't know why he came around. All I was doing was throwing wood," he said. "I'm not even a hunter."
He said wood he was dropping into a bucket could have sounded like the antlers of jousting deer knocking together, a noise hunters often mimic to lure deer during rutting season.
Deer attacks are uncommon, but not unheard of, said wildlife biologist Ed Reed of the state Department of Environmental Conservation.
"This is breeding season for whitetails, and they get pretty aggressive, usually with other bucks," Reed said. "They have been known to attack people. If he sees something moving, he feels like it's somebody encroaching on his territory."