What Happened to This Yellowstone Pronghorn?

Photo of pronghorn doe with would on top of her neck.

What caused this?

Take a close look at the upper back/lower neck area of this female pronghorn.  Hair is missing.  It looks like flesh is missing as well.  The “hole” seems fairly deep.  What happened?  Any ideas?

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About Jim Coda

I am a nature photographer living in the San Francisco Bay Area. I specialize in photos of birds, mammals, and landscapes.
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2 Responses to What Happened to This Yellowstone Pronghorn?

  1. First flash is bear … wrong place, wrong time, bear not hungry, just irritated and slightly doubtful and felt no need for a kill.

    • Jim Coda says:

      A bear seems like a good guess to me Renee. A bear would have the height to claw or bite a pronghorn on its back. Same for a mountain lion. I’ve read that the most common predator of pronghorn is the coyote and I’ve seen coyotes chase pronghorns. I guess a coyote could have done it as well, although I have a hard time picturing a coyote creating that wound in that place. Given its larger size a wolf might have an easier time doing that than a coyote, but it doesn’t seem like the wound I’d expect from a wolf attack. I’ll never know for sure what caused the wound.

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