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About 1,200 wild deer inhabit all over Nara Park, including the precincts of Kasuga Shrine, Todai-ji

The wild deer in Nara Park have long been warmly protected, as they are regarded as divine messengers of Kasuga Shrine. Killing a deer necessarily resulted in a severe penalty, and it is said that some offenders were actually sentenced to capital punishment. These deer once were threatened with extinction during and right after the second World War when the locals were suffering from a food shortage. However the number of the deer has been kept around 1,200 after that, thanks to the protection activities. Deer originally are very much timid animals though, the deer here are well tamed as they have long been fed by the locals. But they become short-tempered in the rat, so the locals periodically dehorn the bucks. From this point, they are not wild deer but belong to Kasuga Shrine to be more precise. It is under the consideration recently to cut back the number of the deer, because of the damage to the plants and crops caused by these deer. Licensed tour guide, travel consultant, Masahisa Takaki.

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