It’s mating season for local deer and several bucks have been spotted wandering through Saanich with various lawn items stuck in their antlers.
During the week of Oct. 16, animal control officers with the Saanich Police Department responded to two calls about deer with items tangled in their antlers.
Residents are encouraged to put away hazardous items that may get caught on deer’s antlers and keep an eye out for animals on the roadways, said Const. Markus Anastasiades, public information officer. He noted that the “males are becoming more aggressive” as the rut – breeding season – is now underway.
B.C. Conservation Service Sgt. Scott Norris explained that late October and early November are “prime time for the rut” in the Greater Victoria region. He added that the season’s start and end dates can vary by area so residents should be wary throughout the fall.
The bucks will be “fighting for access to females” and scrubbing their antlers on anything they can find which may include a fence or a backyard hammock, Norris said. Residents should lock up and secure anything that could get caught in deer’s antlers.
Anyone who comes across a deer during the rutting season should “keep their wits about them,” give it space and back away, he said. Dogs should also be kept on a leash as bucks currently have a “heightened sense of aggression” and have been known to cross the road to go after dogs.
Deer with items caught around their antlers or neck “in a dangerous way” – if the items are stopping them from eating, seeing or walking – can be reported to B.C. Conservation at 1-877-952-RAPP or texting #7277 on a cellphone.