Deer drowned on MN lake after being harassed by boater, DNR told


DNR officials are investigating reports that a deer drowned in a lake in northwestern Minnesota after being harassed to exhaustion by a pontoon driver over Labor Day weekend.

The Fargo Forum reports that a large buck was found dead in Tulaby Lake, in Becker and Mahnomen counties, on Sept. 6 by members of the Tulaby Lake Association Board.

According to KFGO, the deer was prevented from reaching the shore by the boater as it swam in the lake.

Board member Ray Thorkildson told the Forum: "The (guy) gets between the deer and land to block it and it turns away. Ultimately he ends up chasing it, according to a witness, and it ends up drowning — a beautiful big buck."

"I'm really upset and I sure hope something is done to the perpetrator."

According to the Star Tribune, one of the witnesses to the incident was another boater who confronted the pontoon driver and took photos of his craft, though he is believed to be a visitor using somebody else's boat.

The deer's body was found about 300 yards from shore.

"It's just a tragic event," another association member, Dan Peterson, told the Star Tribune. "From our standpoint, our lake association is in a beautiful wilderness area, wooded area, and our members are all about promoting and preserving and protecting."

Richard Sprouse of the DNR confirmed the investigation is ongoing, but the DNR did not comment on the incident. He did tell BringMeTheNews that reports of animal harassment are not common, noting he's rarely heard or seen it in officer reports over the past 20 years.

Next Up


Early Saturday crash leaves 2 kids, 1 adult dead in Maple Grove

The crash happened just before 7 a.m. Saturday.

State Patrol

State Patrol reports 2 fatal crashes on Friday in Minnesota

The first incident happened in Austin Township, and the second happened in Birch Lake Township.


Deaths on Minnesota roads in 2021 at highest level in more than a decade

There have been a total of eight motorcyclist fatalities on Minnesota roads this year.

Screen Shot 2021-05-08 at 9.15.09 AM

Chinese rocket debris to crash somewhere on Earth this weekend

Minnesota appears to be just outside of it's massive potential crash zone.

Starlink satellites

Strange lights in Minnesota sky Friday night were SpaceX satellites

SpaceX is planning to launch 60 more Starlink satellites on Sunday, May 9.

Jorge Polanco

Shoemaker, Twins lineup rebounds against Tigers

Jorge Polanco homered in a 7-3 victory over Detroit.

Kirill Kaprizov / Minnesota Wild

Watch: Kaprizov's OT winner lifts Wild into 2nd place in West

Kaprizov's goal gave the Wild a 3-2 victory over the Ducks.

Byron Buxton

Buxton placed on IL, Trevor Larnach called up

Buxton could be out "for weeks" with a hip strain.

A bald eagle perched on branches.

USFWS confirms 2 bald eagles were shot dead

The agency is offering a reward for information in the case.


Another drowning prompts another warning: Be careful on lakes

A 17-year-old died after being pulled from Lake O'Dowd near Shakopee after about half an hour on Friday. Officials are pleading with holiday visitors to lakes and pools to take safety precautions.