Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Deer, Deer and More Deer

I had to go to the village last night for a meeting.  The sun had just gone down  so I activated my high beam headlights before traversing our driveway.  It is somewhat narrow with a couple of slight curves in it and, if you aren't paying attention, it would be easy to slide off the road.  I made it to the street and was thinking about something or other when I noticed a movement in the bush.  I slowed down just as a deer popped onto the road.  Where there is one, usually two or more follow so I continued moving slowly and watching the area where the animal had crossed.  This one was a loner so I resumed speed.  I hadn't gone very far when the same thing happened and then, a bit later still another deer decided the other side of the road was a better place to be.
When you live in the country, you get used to sharing the road with various critters.  Deer are particularly prevellant in the winter especially at the houses where people feed them.  Every year, the local papers run articles about why the deer should be allowed to fend for themselves but no one seems to take notice.  We were part of the guilty group our first winter.  Having the lovely creatures in our backyard and wandering close to the house was not only a novelty but an awesome sight.  However, we soon realized that this could get to be an expensive proposition and, no matter how much we spread the feed around, the bigger deer wouldn't allow the smaller ones to get a morsel.
This year we have left the feeding to our neighbours and what they steal from our birdfeeders.  We have tried to discourage this latter behaviour but, to date, haven't been successful.  We have put chicken wire around the opening but they have manage to poke through that.  My next step is barbed wire.  Seems rather drastic but it may be the only way to save the seeds for the intended recipients.  An added benefit is that this may also discourage the squirrels that steal what is not rightfully theirs.
I still love to see the deer in the yard and they are welcome to nibble whatever tree pleases them but it is war when it comes to the bird's feed.

1 comment:

  1. We have the same problem here in our city. There is a rather large herd of deer in the north-west end, near a bog. Again, some residents just don't get it and continue to feed them. Then the complain about the damage. So the city suggested a cull, well, that caused a whole new outcry from animal activists. Why can't people enjoy nature, but leave it alone? God created it in His wisdom.