Left, Tony Rhodes, director of operations for the Entertainment Design Group, and Director of Field Operations Warren Umphress prepare to put a “zebra” statue in place.

Local wildlife experts report unusual sightings around Buckhead.

Bucks standing upright and wearing clothes painted in an array of bizarre patterns are hanging out at random spots around town. Like the legendary leprechaun, these bucks are rumored to bestow treasure.

The bucks were first spotted on Memorial Day weekend and herds are expected to move through the area throughout the summer and fall. On May 25, Tony Rhodes and Warren Umphress, with Entertainment Design Group, left one of the bucks at an undisclosed location. This particular buck had Zebra-like stripes, but the patterns are not consistent among the species.

One buck was reportedly covered up with dollar bills. Another was wrapped in yarn. The bucks fascinate locals and biologists alike.

“There have been a lot of pictures taken,” Umphress said after making sure the Zebra Buck was safe and secure.

A group calling itself “Bucks on the Street,” apparently a club for anthropomorphic deer enthusiasts, say folks who take their picture with these mythical beasts are eligible to win prizes to Buckhead hotspots.

But you have to find them first. The “Bucks on the Street” group will post clues on its Facebook page every two weeks giving buck hunters hints on the creatures’ locations. The wildlife experts report that unlike other common species of deer, these bucks have prominent financial backers.

The statues are being auctioned and sponsored to raise money for Livable Buckhead.

The Buckhead Business Association paid $10,000 to sponsor one. More than a dozen other sponsors paid $4,000 per buck, including prominent names like Georgia Power, Fifth Third Bank and Mercedes-Benz of Buckhead.

The bucks enjoy their standard of living and welcome more generous benefactors, Bucks on the Street reports. The money goes toward a group called Livable Buckhead, which supports sustainability, mobility and green space, all things the bucks are known to enjoy.

Based on the list of known sponsors, the public already has contributed at least $92,000 toward supporting the habitat of the community’s newest species.

Allison Farmer, a spokeswoman for Bucks on the Street, says the goal is to raise at least $100,000 for the group.

“We’re hoping we continue to sell them,” Farmer said. “The more the better for Livable Buckhead.”

This fall, sponsors will have a chance to get a buck of their very own at an auction party that will generate more money for Livable Buckhead. By all appearances, the animals look easy to care for. They don’t talk. They don’t eat. They don’t run out in front of cars in the middle of the night and stare, stupefied, at headlights.

They do like to stand around looking sophisticated and interesting. Some guests at local parties have a tough time pulling that off.

So go ahead and give in, Bucks on the Street says. They say giving a buck for some bucks will not only make you look cooler but it will buck up the community, too.

“Bucks on the Street is a community project meant to instill a sense of excitement and pride for those who live, work, or play in Buckhead, while contributing to programs designed to enhance the Buckhead area,” the group said.

Dan Whisenhunt

Dan Whisenhunt wrote for Reporter Newspapers from 2011 - 2014. He is the founder and editor of Decaturish.com