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WildSafeBC: Do not feed deer

WildSafeBC is reminding communities to avoid feeding deer intentionally, noting it’s against the Wildlife Act and it’s against Cranbrook and Kimberley bylaws.

Danica Roussy, WildSafeBC Community Coordinator, said the public shouldn’t be feeding deer for any reason.

“Deer have plenty of natural foods in the wilds and keeping them there will prevent the need to deal with a deer ‘problem’ in your neighbourhood at some later date,” said Roussy. “To keep problem deer from getting too comfortable in your yard, aside from not feeding them, there are other methods to prevent them from sticking around.”

Roussy said it is okay to haze deer from your property whenever they appear, eventually teaching the wildlife that your property isn’t worth their effort to find food sources.

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“It is illegal for you or your dog to injure a deer,” reminded Roussy. “Hazing techniques can include banging pots and pans loudly or spraying the hose at them.”

Motion-activated lights and sprinklers could also dissuade deer from a property.

“Deer are normally timid animals but if they become habituated to humans, they can become a danger,” said the WildSafeBC Community Coordinator. “Never approach a deer, especially if it has young with it.”

“If a deer does attack you – try to stay upright as they inflict injury by striking at their opponent with their sharp hooves. Cover your head with your arms and back off to some form of shelter. Deer may signal an impending attack by laying their ears back and lowering their head.”

With fawning season officially here, Roussy is reminding the public that deer will leave their fawns unattended. She said it’s imperative that the public leaves the fawns alone. Moving the fawn transfers human scent to the scentless young deer and can lead to abandonment by its mother or an inability for the doe to find its young.

“Do not approach the fawn as the doe may act aggressively to protect their young, just as any mother would,” added Roussy.

WildSafeBC said any aggressive deer should be reported to the B.C. Conservation Officer Service RAPP (Report All Poachers and Polluters) line at 1-877-952-7277.

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