PLAIN, Wis. - The shooting of a white deer in Sauk County during the nine-day gun deer hunting season has residents upset.
Bryan Walsh is one of the residents who has enjoyed watching the deer grow up throughout the years. Walsh had a front-row seat to watch the buck that would frequently roam his property; his daughter even named the deer "whitey" after his rare color.
Almost four years to the day Walsh first saw "whitey," he discovered a hunter had shot and killed the deer.
"When I heard about it was a sickening feeling like your horse died or a family pet," Walsh said.
Walsh said it's a feeling that many others share in the community. Residents are planning to make a Facebook page for the deer with photos and videos captured throughout the years.
"We just had a connection with the deer. He was a favorite. People drove for miles to drive up and see if they could see him standing on the hill," Walsh said.
The DNR Bureau of Law Enforcement has completed its investigation on the case and has turned it over to the court system.
It's a loss that hurts more knowing that by law, his death shouldn't have happened. It is illegal for hunters to kill a white deer in Wisconsin. Despite the fines hunters face, Walsh believes more needs to be done.
"This deer is protected. That means you don't kill them. People don't go out there shooting badgers or cranes, this was protected," he said. "You can go out and shoot this monarch and pay a $303 fine and it is over and done with, but a $303 fine doesn't bring the enjoyment 100 people had from seeing that white deer all the time."
Residents in the area have created a website for people to learn more about the rare animal.