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Downtown Deer

It would be easy to assume that these surreal captures are Photoshopped, yet they actually represent an unusual aspect of life in Japan, specifically in the city of Nara and on Miyajima Island. In these regions, wild deer were once considered sacred, and presently they are a common sight, even in the most urban of areas. Nara has a population of half a million human residents and 1000+ deer, which are a familiar sight to humans who regularly navigate around them.

This photo series by photographer Yoko Ishii captures the phenomenon in these interesting shots. To learn more, see video of the deer as well as view more photos by Ishii, visit this link.

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They may look cute in the stills, but they're pests that harass tourists (because tourists buy special 'deer crackers' to feed them). One in Nara had just finished shedding its antlers and decided to rub the bloody stump all over my coat.
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