Deer Going Home-Be Careful

All over the state of Michigan deer have been heading “home!”  We probably don’t think about this aspect in a deers life, but during the winter months most deer “yard up.”  That is they usually migrate to an area that has food, cover, and an element of safety concerning predators.

We have a huge marsh area here in Monroe county that covers most of our eastern boundary.  It butts right up to Lake Erie, and the deer love to congregate there during the winter months.  Of course not all deer “yard up” just as not all people go to Florida in the winter; some do tough it out.

Once the weather breaks, these “bunched up” deer start heading back to their home range.  That’s where the problem comes in.  It kind of reminds me of the “rut!”  Most car/deer accidents take place during the rut, but it’s probably safe to say that the winter yarding transition time runs a close second.

My son-in-law Tony lives parallel to the Erie Marsh, and during his drive to work yesterday morning he hit a deer.  Or should I say a deer hit him?  The deer ran into the side of his Focus, broke off the mirror, flipped over the top of the car, and sprawled out on the highway.  It then crawled into a ditch and eventually got into a cut corn field where Tony lost sight of it.  In the top picture he’s inspecting the damage to his car.  It wasn’t as bad as it could of been.  A broken mirror, a few scratches, and a small dent on the bottom of the door is far better than many drivers experience when they have an encounter with a deer.

He called the police so he could make a report for his insurance company, and also called me to see if I wanted the deer.  I hurriedly got dressed and headed out to retrieve the deer.  With flashlights in tow we traversed the 20 acre corn field to no avail.  The deer had made it to the safety of the woods.  Deer are tough hombres!  They are the original Timex watch.  “They take a licking and keep on ticking!”  Who knows this deer may end up coyote food, or he may actually survive his “run-in” with a 3000 pound vehicle.

The point is that there are two other deer carcasses within a quarter mile of Tony’s close encounter.  They are heading home, and their getting killed and injured.  Sometimes it’s not just the deer that gets hurt, but people can, and are, also victims in car/deer accidents.  So please be aware that the deer are headed home for Spring, and they may be heading in your direction!


One Response to “Deer Going Home-Be Careful”

  1. Art says:

    A great reminder, Mike. This time of the year is notorious for producing car/deer accidents.

    On another note: I wish it was still deer season.