“Ugly” is a very subjective word. What seems grotesque to one person may be beautiful to another. However, the more we look at these pictures, the more we notice that there is just something very objectively wrong with how these antlers were developed.
Have you ever bagged a buck (or doe) with an ugly rack? There are a number of reasons why these antlers came in the way they did. Due to the nature of how antlers grow, just about any injury can have an effect on their shape. Some common deformities involve unicorn-like horns, or antlers sprouting from different places on the skull. Even more strangely, some bucks will grow a permanent rack in a condition called “cactus head.” These antlers will be perpetually covered in velvet and never be shed. Over time, the hardening velvet will grow into small spikes along the entire length of the rack, giving it its trademark cactus-like appearance.
Antlers can also “travel.” In the past racks have been successfully grafted to other parts of the deer’s body, and in a 1984 study, scientists were able to transplant an antler pedicle to a fawn’s leg. Of course in nature these out-of-place antlers have little use and only serve as a detriment to the animal. Some antlers have even known to grow out of or into a deer’s eye, partially blinding it.
Would you hang any of these racks on your wall?
Featured image from Imgur