The state set up an unsanctioned graveyard where it secretly dumped the bodies of dead deer stuck by cars in Staten Island, according to a report Friday.
At least three of the furry corpses — some of them headless — were found alongside piles of bones and sculls next to a highway in Mount Loretto Unique Area park, the Staten Island Advance reported.
“There were bones everywhere. I started to get a little freaked out,” said the aptly-named wildlife photographer, Tom Puma, who made the disturbing discovery.
The state’s Department of Environmental Conservation later admitted to The Post that it dumped the animal carcasses in the creepy unauthorized grave.
By contrast, Lefty — the beloved Harlem buck who died during a feud between Mayor de Blasio and Gov. Cuomo — met a more honorable fate when the city hired a vendor to burn his body last month, city officials said.
On Dec. 30, Puma of Tompkinsville stumbled onto the chilling state-run boneyard, he told the Staten Island Advance.
“There was a deer carcass, maybe 8 feet away from me… I turned around and saw another one, and then maybe another 10 feet away there was another one,” he said.
He added, ”I thought somebody was either coming in there and killing them or maybe they all were together and ate something that poisoned them.”
But he soon learned the state was responsible for the eerie and unsanitary sight.
The deer were improperly disposed of by staffers from the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation, an official said.
“In this instance, DEC staff deposited deer remains in a remote area of Mount Loretto Unique Area and did not follow proper agency procedures for burial,” DEC spokesman Sean Mahar told The Post.
“The deer had died from natural causes on state property or from being hit by vehicles, and have been buried. DEC staff have been reminded about the proper disposal procedures to ensure this does not happen again.”
The animals are scheduled to be buried properly later this week, he said.
Dead deer are supposed to be buried two feet under the ground, incinerated or disposed in landfills to prevent water contamination, according to the DEC.
Some neighbors were stunned to learn about the dead animals in the park. “I run over there in the summer — that’s gross,” Melissa Esposito, 47, of Tottenville.
Lefty the one-antlered buck died from stress while in captivity at a Harlem Animal Care and Control center — as de Blasio and Cuomo fought over whether to euthanize him or free him upstate — on Dec. 16.
The young buck had swam to Manhattan in search of a mate.