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Little Rupert The One Pound Deer

Message claims that attached photographs depict "Rupert", a one pound deer that was delivered by caesarean section at a wildlife hospital after his mother was killed by a car.

Brief Analysis
The photographs are genuine. Little Rupert was born by caesarean at the Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in September 2008. Sadly, Rupert died just a few days after he was born despite the efforts of his carers.

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Detailed analysis and references below example.

Last updated: 24th March 2011
First published: 24th March 2011
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer

Subject: FW: One pound deer--------He is beautiful

One pound deer---he is beautiful

Kinda 'makes your day doesn't it ?

This tiny deer was delivered by Caesarean section at a Wildlife hospital after a car killed his mother.

Little Rupert, who is so small he can fit in an adult's hand, was born after vets failed in their battle to save his mother.

Rupert One Pound Deer 1

At just 6" tall and weighing just over a pound, he is now in an incubator in the intensive care unit at Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in Buckinghamshire. He has only recently opened his eyes.

Les Stocker, founder of Tiggywinkles, said, "Rupert's mother had very severe injuries. We brought him out and got him breathing, and then he went into an incubator on oxygen. He is now being fed by a tube."

Rupert One Pound Deer 2

Rupert in an incubator.

Rupert One Pound Deer 3

Rupert pulls a striking pose for the camera.

Rupert One Pound Deer 4

Staff members are optimistic that Rupert, now 5 days old, will make a full recovery.

"Deer are very, very tricky, but this one has spirit. He's an extremely feisty, Little guy and quite pushy," Mr. Stocker said.

Rupert One Pound Deer 5

Asleep: Rupert takes 40 winks.

Hope you will share this one.

Image credit: Les Stocker

Detailed Analysis
These photographs of a tiny deer have been circulating via email and social media since 2008. The message that comes with the photographs claims that they depict "Rupert", a deer born by caesarean section at Tiggywinkles Wildlife Park after his mother was killed by a car.

The photographs are genuine and were taken by Les Stocker at the Tiggywinkles Wildlife Park in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, UK. An article about Rupert on the Tiggywinkles Wildlife Park website confirms that his mother died a few days after being struck by a car. She had major injuries and, in spite of expert care, staff at the park could not save her. The article explains:
As her pregnancy was so far advanced, the decision was taken to give her unborn fawn a chance. Rupert was delivered by Caesarean section on Thursday 25th September [2008].

Rupert was very premature and taken immediately into intensive care. He was placed into an incubator with an oxygen supply and heat, and a soft vet bed so make him comfortable.

He was unable to suckle initially and so was fed by tube initially with colostrum to mimic the protective feeds he would have received from his mother.
Sadly, however, in spite of intense efforts to save little Rupert by dedicated carers at Tiggywinkles, he died just six days after his birth. An October 2nd 2008 report in the Bucks Herald, noted:
GUTTED' is the feeling of staff at St Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in Haddenham after the sad death of little Rupert a tiny muntjac deer on Wednesday afternoon.

The six inch baby who was delivered by caesarean section earlier this week was dicing with death from the beginning of birth after his mother died from serious head injuries.

At just over a pound in weight he was kept in a life supporting incubator in intensive care and was thought to be two or three weeks premature. He had all the symptoms of a premature human baby. His lungs were not inflating properly and problems emerged after he was not able to ingest his mothers milk (colostrum).
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Tiggywinkles Wildlife Park
Tiggywinkles Wildlife Park - Rupert
Sadness as Rupert the baby deer dies

Last updated: 24th March 2011
First published: 24th March 2011
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer