A local deer apparently left his EZ-Pass at home.

Last week the New York State Bridge Authority shared images of a deer that they caught swimming from one side of the Hudson River to the other. The photos show the deer halfway between Ulster and Dutchess counties near the Mid-Hudson Bridge.

Most people view deer as unintelligent animals that are prone to jumping in front of moving vehicles. But in reality, deer are pretty smart and athletic. According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, deer can run up to 40 miles per hour, clear an 8-foot fence and, yes, swim.

Although they don't look like it, deer are able to swim long distances in river waters that run over 10mph. Deer have even been known to swim from island to island in the ocean. The section of the Hudson River where this ambitious deer was spotted is about a half-mile wide. And, yes, the NYS Bridge Authority confirmed that the deer did make it all the way across to the other side.

Facebook/New York State Bridge Authority
Facebook/New York State Bridge Authority

It's unclear why this particular animal decided to go for a swim, but deer have been known to take to the water to escape predators or seek out food. With such beautiful, warm weather blanketing the Hudson Valley this past week, it's also possible this deer was just looking to cool off and thought going for a swim would be fun.

Have you ever seen a deer swimming in the river or a lake? We'd love to hear your stories. Feel free to share them on our Facebook page or in the comments section below.

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