The 9-year-old reindeer was on the lam for 2½ hours Thursday, scampering through busy Santa Maria streets, strawberry fields and residential areas.
Rancher Bob Acquistapace, riding a horse and wearing a cowboy hat, boots and spurs, finally got a rope over the reindeer's head at about noon and tied the exhausted animal to a lamppost. The reindeer was eventually loaded into a trailer.
The reindeer escaped from the Hopper Bros. Christmas tree lot at the Santa Maria Fairpark. Acquistapace, who is married to a Fairpark employee, happened to be at a nearby ranch with his horse.