A man has suffered stab wounds to his chest and stomach in a deer attack at Otford.
The stag’s antler pierced 10cms into the right, lower side of the man’s chest, puncturing his chest wall, shortly before 3.20pm Friday.
He suffered a second wound to the left side of his stomach.
A NSW Ambulance helicopter was called in to collect the man from Bulgo Beach, in the Royal National Park.
A paramedic was winched into the site before the chopper landed on grass near the base of a steep, vegetated incline, about 4pm.
The 58-year-old man remained conscious throughout his ordeal. He was airlifted to St George Hospital in a serious but stable.
The Mercury understands the man is a resident of the Bulgo Beach coastal shack community.
There is no road access to the beach, which can only be reached by a downhill walking track off Lady Wakehurst Drive.
Feral deer have been identified as the most significant animal threat in the Illawarra, both for the environmental and social damage they can cause.
Mid-last year the NSW Government was advised by its own Natural Resources Commission that deer should be reclassified as a pest species, which would allow them to be killed more easily.
But they remain listed as a game species statewide.
Wollongong City Council declares deer a "priority pest" but this does not create enforcement powers. Council has its own deer hunting program.
It is illegal to kill them on public land or any land without permission of the owner. It remains illegal to hunt without permission and there have been prosecutions.
Most deer in the Illawarra are of the rusa deer species.
They have regularly made a nuisance of themselves in suburbs near the bush or escarpment from Helensburgh to Keiraville and Figtree, including threatening cars on Mt Ousley.
Last year a 61-year old man was flown to hospital after being gored by a deer near Lithgow.
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