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Ghost-like white stag spotted


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A mythical and ghostly creature has appeared in the wilds of the Scottish Highlands -- and has been caught on camera.


The rare white stag, from the red deer species, is believed to be among just a tiny handful living in Britain, according to a conservation group.


The John Muir Trust is now keeping the stag's location secret for fear of poachers.


"To see him amongst the other stags was truly thrilling because he does look like a ghost: you do a double-take," Trust Partnership Manager Fran Lockhart, who filmed the stag, told Reuters.


White stags are seen as a magical and powerful force in many mythologies.


The animal's ghostly glow comes from a recessive gene which causes leucism, a condition which reduces the normal brown coloring in hair and skin. They are not albinos, which have red eyes due to lack of pigment.


In Celtic traditions, white stags represent messengers from the afterlife. Arthurian legend has it that the creature can never be caught -- King Arthur's pursuit of the animal represents mankind's spiritual quest.


It is also said that for those who set eyes on the animal, a momentous moment is near.


"They say their appearance is meant to herald some profound change in life for those who encounter them -- but I am still waiting," said Lockhart.


Her dog, though, stood transfixed for 45 minutes watching the white stag, instead of his usual scampering around.


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  • 3 months later...

Seems to me that Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth sighted a magnificent stag when she retreated to the Scottish highlands. I guess it wasn't white, though. She took it as some kind of signal or omen, I believe. Don't know if it was a true anecdote or just a script writer's dream.


By the way, on another thread I touted Harrison Ford as an inventor who takes an ice making machine to the Moskito Coast in Central America - to primitive local tribes. In just checking the 'net -- it seems Helen Mirren played his wife in that film with River Phoenix as their son.

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