houseofchimeras: (Pantairin - Self)
Date First Written : September 2012

Deer equates to prey. Or at least that is the idea of many have immediately upon the consideration of what deer are. Deer of any species are often a source of food for a number of other animals in the world either directly by hunting them or by scavenging. Other animals depend upon the existence of various deer species that live in the same habitat with them. In many areas, if deer disappeared many large predators would starve due to lack of other large animals to eat. Yet, there is something people often forget too easily. The fact that deer are not prey. At least, not without calcification of events. A deer becomes prey, rather than are always just prey.

Prey is only something that happens when one messes up or luck is not in your favor. Wild deer have their own lives and do not live to just be eaten. They live for their own kinds existence and to continue on with their species. Animals adapt and live together and against each other. No animal is better than the other and each lives to live in whichever way possible for them. A simple fact of nature is that any animal can become prey to another really given the right events. The nature and traits of a deer are for their own survival and deer did not evolve as they have because they are prey but rather they evolved as they have to avoid being prey. The wariness and sensitive nature of the deer is meant to keep them alive.

As a deer therianthrope, these are just some of the awkward instincts that come into my mind. I have found that there is an interesting conflict in being a deer, and that is what I can best describe as the mix of two powerful feelings - wariness and curiosity. The wariness of a deer is perhaps the most apparent to many people who have watched deer. The ready nature of a deer to move and react in some way or form in a moment, even if the reaction  may not be needed or be executed in a way that could have been done better. The curiosity of deer is to keep watchful eyes open and take note the around them. To inquire on what is going on around them and so to better react. Curiosity and wariness compliant each other for deer, but for a deer in human form the mix of two instincts can lead to awkward situations. Such as spooking from sudden movement or sounds often leading to awkward situations because I am a deer in a human body. Such wary instincts do not often work like they are supposed to for a deer in the mold of human society. The human species is a social predator and so the human species are not one to be as conditioned by the lives of those that came before them to be as wary of possible danger. Such is the nature of many predators and even more so is the nature of domestication into human society.

The deer that are seen on hunting and outdoor shirts and posters are not really how deer are. Just like many species of animals, deer are plagued with over romanticism of traits that human beings see as admirable while outright ignoring less ‘glamorous’ facts of life for deer.  My instincts and behaviors as a deer is not just about fleeing from possible danger or standing as majestically as possible. My instincts are filled with in instincts to graze on plant-life when I see healthy lush plants such as grass and clover, the instinct to kneel down to drink when I see bodies of water, to be with others of my kind, to use my awareness and remain alert to what my senses are bringing in, wanting to find a safe place to settle down and chew my cud, and many more little things. My nature as being a deer in a human body is more then just one small aspect of a deer’s overall life and behavior. All animals are complex living organisms with a wide verity of behaviors.

As a deer therian in the therianthropy community I am tried of being called food. When I speak that I am a deer therian, what I can sometimes receive back are comments about that deer are tasty or being given teasing jokes of promising not to hunt me. I might be a deer in a human body but I am still human and if you seriously consider me food then I implore you to seek psychiatric help. And for that matter if I were physically a deer and the other their own species, a healthy deer can often outrun a number of other animals out to hunt them and even when cornered they can easily be killed by a good kick or stomp. If I bring up not liking being called prey and bring up that deer are not prey I have been waved off as not being able to take a joke. I hardly find calling someone their food a joke. 

Perhaps I am not surprised that how few non-carnivore theriotype therians don’t stick around long at all. Sometimes I think, if you do not know why, simply look at what comes out of some people’s mouths sometimes. Teasing and playful jokes thought to be innocent and made in fun are often not such by the person the receiving end. Perhaps to the gray wolf therians that I meet I should exclaim how I love watching wolves being hunted by airplane or being killed for someone’s exotic stake; or to the dog therians speak of how some countries eat dog and my interest in trying it one day. Those statements might be lies coming from me and I am sicken to any such thoughts, but such statements are allowed to be said to deer therians by others.

Some might exclaim that deer are often hunted unlike some other animals, yet remember - any animal can become prey to another animal if the opportunity arises to another. Wolves have been seen hunting down foxes and wolves will kill and eat other wolves if the opportunity arises. Carnivores may eat plant material if given the right place and need, even if it is not dire and likewise; and even herbivores have been known to eat meat-material as well. And regardless of this, how socially awkward do you think to feels herbivore therians to be called food to other therians? Treated like a piece of meat literally? Truly t is tiresome and straining. I’ve been asked if being around carnivore therians makes me feel uncomfortable. Thinking about it, I sometimes have to say yes but not because of what they are but what they constantly say and mention to me personally. A real life deer does not always flee in terror at the sight of another animal.

I am a deer in a human body. I do not “prey” in a human body. I see myself as a deer; not as a product of what others may take me for. The body, instinct, and nature of the various species of deer is where my identity resides.

Further driving a wedge between my identity and another therian’s is the difference in nature between a number of herbivores and a number of carnivores. A lot of people don’t seem to get therians over all, but even within therianthropy the subgroups can’t seem to fully get the others. How can a number of land-based therians ever fully sympathize with any number of water-dwelling therian nor sky-flying therians. Herbivore not fully understanding carnivore, extinct therians to extant ones. Some experiences can be similar but others are as alien as ever to the other. I can’t image the instincts that drive some therians to want to hunt and chase let alone eat raw flesh of another; but in the same token, I doubt few therians could imagine my instincts for complete awareness of my surroundings and alertness nor my strong desire to graze.

Neither are wrong nor lesser. Just different. We are all different, and we are all therians as the word therian include all animals large and small. Therians come in many different theriotypes, and deer therians are part that. Deer therians are a part of the community as much as any kind of theriotypes. We should all be respected.

- Pantairin
houseofchimeras: (Pantairin - Self)
Date First Written : January 2012

My theriotype and my true self is one of no distinct species, but rather many into one instead. A collective or all in one deal, if you will. In the innerworld I share with my fellow headmates (other individual persons sharing one physical body) and outwardly in my therianthropic experiences my shape can take on any number of deer species. In this innerworld, or the place within our mental landscape where we interact one on one like individuals, I can change into any species of deer. But only a deer and nothing more. Likewise, what the therian community refers to as shifts and other therianthropic experiences when I take control of our physical body.

As a deer cladotherian, I identify with all deer species from the small tropical pudú stepping about the underbrush to the great moose that roams the northern lands. This is not limited to modern or still living species of deer and rather extends to even now extinct ones. I do have my favorite deer forms, and my shape in the innerworld and fronting experiences often reflect this though the species I reflect is not always of my conscious choosing. Of these deer species which are some of my more partial to my liking to take on include the sika deer, roe deer, Eld’s deer, and reindeer. They are but only a few deer species in the world however. They are just the deer species which are most familiar and typical from me both innerworld in shape and through my therian experiences they are the most prevent. Other deer species from the axis deer to the sambar to the white-tailed deer are also taken or can be on a fairly regular basis. Of them all, sika deer stands out strongly to me.

In the beginning, being a cladotherian did not even come into being in my thoughts as possibility. My original assumption was either the presence of several deer theriotypes (polytherianthropy), and/or simply some of them being cameo shifts with various deer species and one or perhaps two of them was actually my theriotype(s). Before cladotherianthropy came-up as a possibility I had applied to my being a number of deer species which I was most drawn into. I leapt between thinking I was one deer species to another deer species day by day. Being fairly sure of one deer species and being able to apply that shape onto my innerworld world body so easily, only for me to be able to so change to another deer species. By the time cladotherianthropy came into suspect, I had found myself labeled with no less than five species while also not being able to ignore all other deer.

The prospect of being a polymorph or shapeshifter never really came to mind since I knew I was a deer and only experienced things as only deer. It was vary narrowed down to a select spectrum and it was only the deer species that changed but never the identification with it. With the idea of being cladotherian in mind I began searching for any mention of the term and ponderings on the matter throughout the communities online. Finding personal experiences from others about their own cladotherianthropy was hard to come by making my search on being cladotherian or not more apprehensive. Yet the definitions I saw of the term certainly did apply quite nicely to my experiences. Every time I looked afar along the deer family, everywhere I looked I could only find something within myself for every deer I came across. It was looking into a mirror, and all I saw was myself reflected back in some curious way. It was not about being undeceive on a species, but rather being sure of being one with a group of related animals. It wasn’t that I could not decide of what I was, as much as I was actually all ready there. Bending to the deer species as nimbly as water flowing into a space. And so, as it was, I came to the decision I was a cladotherian of all Cervidae.

Some general nonhuman experiences, not related to shifts, that I have include a verity of little nuances in my perspective every time I front. For instance, I get confused when I see my physical self in a mirror and see not another face and features of any fort at home on the face of any deer. Human hands feel so wiry and awkward to me and walking upright is strikingly ungainly in my mind compared to the nimble legs of a deer. I find the limitations of human ears disconcerting and the physical human body’s lack of natural alertness and natural response to the outside environment startling at times. The lack of perception to the human body most unnerving above all. I’m not prey. I don’t think of myself as ’prey.’ I only worry about becoming prey if I do not stay aware.

The outward reflection of my identity of what the therian community commonly refers to as shifts greatly reflects this all deer species conclusion of mine. My dreams, mental, and phantom shifts certainly can take almost any cervine shape and nature. That is not to mention my ability to take on any form that was of a deer sort within our innerworld.

My dreams related to my identity and their content varies as much as the deer that roam this little blue dot of a planet. Some of my more common dreams include roaming the grounds on our near a Buddhist temples or Shinto shrine as a sika deer, likely brought on for my path to being a Buddhist. Other dreams include other distinct landscapes from walking on snow and ice on large hooves but not feeling the bite of the chill while being a reindeer to stepping through a hot rainforest on little hooves and small body as a brocket deer. Perhaps due to my lack of fronting and using the body as often as others in our system, my dream self hardly takes on a human form since I’m a lot more unfamiliar with it. I do not remember much of my dreams often however so they are not a major significance, but they occur.

My mindset away from or toward a more human way of thinking is largely caused by environmental triggers and how long I’ve been fronting. I’m naturally in the mindset of a deer and it’s only when I front for an extended and consistent period of time that my mindset moves away from my instinctive worries as one. Otherwise, I remain in a more deer minded way of thinking and acting though not enough to prevent me from not being able to act human enough to keep up our mask while control our physical body. I’ve not yet had a shift while fronting in which I become completely of a deer mindset without much of the common trappings of human fringes, but I have had times while not fronting where I’ve slipped into a mental shift and purely enjoyed being a deer. Most of us in our system revert to a slightly more human mindset naturally while fronting and then revert back to our more natural state rather quickly after removing ourselves from control of the body. My own cervine mentality is subject to the deer species I am. As a larger deer species such as the Irish elk or moose I am much less likely to be flighty in certain situations while as much smaller deer species I might be even more flighty or nervous toward a lot of activity or movement.

Phantom shifts are one of my most common experiences while I front. Antlers are of course my trademark above all else really. The anthers on my head (or the tusks in my mouth in some cases) very with species and time of year. They may arch backward and then curve around forward with single tines like the antlers of a white-tail, fork near the brow with one going forward and the other curving backward and up with a few tines like an axis deer, they may be a single small spike like a muntjac, or any other formation. The stage of my antlers varies with the species of deer depending on what is natural for them, though generally during the late summer to early fall is when many antlers I might have itch terribly as the velvet falls off to reveal hardened bone only to fall off/disappear from my experience during late winter to early spring to begin a cycle of new growth. If I change from a deer species that has lost their antlers to one that still has their antlers at that certain time of the year or the reverse my phantom antlers will appear or disappear. Regardless, once they are fully grown some antlers become quiet heavy even if they are only phantoms on our human head, however thank goodness my phantom shifts are comparable to human size whether that causes the antlers to be scaled up for smaller deer or scaled down for larger deer species. Only lager antlers (even sized down for human size) tend to cause me trouble due to the bit of stain they put on our physical human neck despite not being there, and their size getting in the way of movement through human obstacles even if they are not there. The worst are the antlers from the Irish Elk, however due to their wide and great size I avoid that form if I can while fronting if I can.  Hooves also sometimes slip through though more on our feet than hands. Once on our human legs they feel akin to the fauns or satyrs of mythology but instead of cloven hooves I feel the shape of deer hooves with the illusion ending just before the knees. I don’t often get phantom hooves on our hands and they are not as vivid as the hooves that can appear on our feet. Those phantom hooves end just past the wrist and just leave me want to carry our middle and index fingers together and our pinky and ring finger together.

My antlers are actually the biggest paradox of my identity because my antlers tell lies about my gender. I am female by identity and my body innerworld reflects this yet as I‘ve already described I annually grow and shed antlers or have tusks akin to any male from any given species even if the female of the species do not naturally have antlers. Regardless to what species I take on, my antlers (or tusks in the case of some species) will look accordingly to the times of the year for that male kind. The reason why this is so and why my head aligns with male deer is a mystery no matter what I try and make of it. It is not unheard for does, even fully fertile ones of many deer species, to grow antlers if their hormones levels, specifically testosterone, are high enough at the right points of the year. In some species of deer it is actually generally more heard of then in other deer species, as its been noted as happening to roe and red deer with some commonality. These occasions are uncommon though overall for the annual years throughout a doe’s life. The most common form of antlered does are does with mere numbs of their head or even with small poorly developed antlers (Wislocki). It is rarer for antlered does to reach the final stage of fully mature antlers with no velvet due to the number of hormone surges it takes to reach the final stage (DePerno and Jenks). Of course, my innerworld is hardly limited by actual hormones. Never-the-less, I grow antler‘s like any make deer even though my femaleness is not in question to me.

Being a deer cladotherian, rather than a certain species of deer therian, might actually explain why I am female yet grow antlers akin to a male deer. Since if my identity is the overall nature of all deer, it seems much more reasonable that I have antlers since they are such a part of the whole biological family Cervidae. Antlers are a trait of the Cervidae though not all species have them (some have tusks instead) and usually only males annually grow them. Does, just as bucks, can grow antlers and it’s only their pheromones which create the necessary barrier. My identity doesn’t have a gender. I have a gender, and since my identity is so encompassing of all traits and natures of all deer rather than defined by a gender or species, antlers (and tusks) seem a logical addition to my daily life as a deer cladotherian. Other than that possible explanation, I have no others. Some things are just as they are without a good solid or known explanation.

Works Cited

      DePerno, Christopher, and Jonathan Jenks. "Field Notes: Antlered Does." Minnesota Department Of Natural Resources. Minnesota Conservation Volunteer, 2004. Web. 9 Nov 2011. <http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/volunteer/mayjun04/fndoes.html>.

      Wislocki, George B. "Antlers In Female Deer, With Report pf Three Cases In. Odocoileus." Journal of Mammalogy. 3.4 (1954): n. page. Print. <http://www.jstor.org/pss/1375571>.

- Pantairin

July 2014

S M T W T F S
  12345
678910 1112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 23rd, 2017 11:40 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios