Two-headed fawn found in Minnesota forest shows rare wildlife deformity

Wild Images In Motion Taxidermy positioned the conjoined fawns on a bed of greenery

D'Angelo added that conjoined twins are common in some species - particularly cattle and sheep - but are seen less regularly in other animals such as deer.

A dead two-headed deer found in a U.S. forest is believed to be the first case of the species conjoined at birth.

"The bodies of the fawns were joined ventrally and laterally with two separate necks and heads", wrote Lou Cornicelli in an abstract in the American Midland Naturalist, a journal of zoology.

That mount will be put on display at the offices for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, and a skeletal recreation will be displayed at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Anatomy Museum in Minneapolis, according to local station KMSP TV.

Researchers said while there have been previous reports of conjoined deer, this was the only one in which the baby reached full term and was born.

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The twins were discovered by a mushroom hunter in the woods of Minnesota in 2016, according to Nine News. D'Angelo called the spot pattern "almost ideal". The finding is being called unbelievable and extremely rare by Gino D'Angelo of the University of Georgia. "Of the tens of millions of fawns born annually in the USA, there are probably abnormalities happening in the wild we don't even know about", D'Angelo said in a press statement.

In Minnesota, a local has found a two-headed deer that astonished the local science community. The body also had two livers, spleens and gastrointestinal tracts. Conjoined deer have been found previously but haven't been delivered. However, they had been discovered dressed and at a natural place, suggesting the doe attempted to take care of them following delivery. A necropsy (B) showed twin sets of organs, including two hearts nestled in the same sac (a).

"Animals that are stillborn, they don't last long on the landscape because of scavengers", said Cornicelli.

Wild Images In Motion Taxidermy positioned the conjoined fawns on a bed of greenery, however, they'll eventually be moved to the Minnesota DNR headquarters in St. Paul and placed on public display.

D'Angelo said conjoined twins are relatively commonly in domestic animals, however they are extremely rare in other wildlife. "The maternal instinct is quite powerful", D'Angelo explained.

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