A young male deer that had a plastic pretzel container stuck on his head for several days has finally been freed.
Maryland Department of Natural Resources said the deer was nicknamed “Jughead” by residents of Bel Air, Maryland. Residents began a Facebook page to get attention for the trapped animal they had been tracking since Jan. 19, WTOP reported.
DNR’s Wildlife Response Team tranquilized the deer Sunday evening after spotting the deer on and off throughout the last week.
Paul Peditto, director of the DNR Wildlife and Heritage Service, told WTOP staffers had to get close enough to the buck to get an accurate shot from a tranquilizer gun and that weather conditions played a role. Peditto said dart guns are subject to the wind, and if a dart were to get blown in the chest cavity of a deer, it would have killed it.
Peditto tweeted video of the deer after it had been tranquilized having the plastic jug removed from his head.
The Associated Press reported DNR spokesman Gregg Bortz said the Wildlife Response Team released the deer from the container, monitored him until he recovered from the tranquilizer and then released him into the wild with new ear tags.
The deer appeared alert and healthy when he was released, DNR said in a statement.
Chris Beauchamp, a resident of the Glenwood Country Club Park neighborhood, told WTOP it was upsetting to see the deer unable to free itself of the container.
“The whole community has kind of chipped in to kind of watch out for this guy and try to get it some help,” Beauchamp told WTOP.
Peditto told WTOP it’s not unusual for deer to get their heads stuck in containers recalling a similar case in Montgomery County where a deer had a bucket stuck on its head.
Peditto told WTOP deer are often drawn to discarded snack containers because they look for the salt inside. Peditto said you can help prevent these happenings by sealing the container before you throw it away.
“Put the lid back on and this problem won’t happen,” Peditto told WTOP.