VAN ORIN — A Van Orin farmer is concerned about finding three dead deer alongside Route 92 near Van Orin Monday morning.
Sam Thiemes reported there had been no evidence the deer had been hit by a passing vehicle, but rather it looked as if they had just dropped dead before crossing the road.
The deer were discovered laying in the ditch in front of Bache Memorial Chapel around 8 a.m.
Thiemes said he used to hunt deer in the area years ago, and also worked for the state of Illinois, traveling to many areas around Illinois and had never seen three deer dead together like he witnessed on Monday.
“If it would have been one deer, I wouldn’t have worried as much,” he said. “But three deer? That worries me.”
Thiemes suspected the deer had gotten into some sort of poison, a chemical sprayed by a local farmer or a disease. He pointed out thrashing marks on one of the deer and said it was evidence that the deer had been thrashing around on the gravel before it died.
After finding the deer, Thiemes said he contacted the Illinois Department of National Resources (IDNR) and later on Monday, the deer were taken from the site.
The Bureau County Republican attempted to contact the IDNR, and while officers in the Bureau County jurisdiction said they were not aware of the incident, it was not uncommon for a group of deer to obtain a disease at once and die.
A representative from the IDNR said there are a tremendous amount of diseases out there that deer can pick up. He mentioned Bluetongue disease, which is a common non-contagious, insect-borne, viral disease.
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