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Deer

    Deer are peaceful to watch; with their soft coats, wide eyes, graceful motions, and playful behaviors, most people hold their eyes for more than a moment when catching a glimpse of this most quiet animal. Fawns are extremely cute, and immediately draw upon the emotions of almost everyone. 

    Deer also serve an important position in the environment and for people by providing a food source toward predation.

    Deer are not always thought well of, however. Deer do cause a lot of damage to home owner's properties by munching in gardens throughout the summer nights, and then by browsing throughout the winter. These ruminants will voraciously feed upon any plant; and quite significantly, they seem to prefer decimating plant life we humans devote the most attention toward. After swelling their bellies, these critters will lie down somewhere safe, and take hours to chew it all up again for better digestion from their second stomachs. Then they will do it all over again, day and night. This behavior can be detrimental if crops are the homeowners livelihood, especially if the herd is very large. This behavior is also very agitating to any homeowner who has invested time, money, and effort into their property to watch it be consumed and defaced.

    There are many steps to utilize in the war against deer destruction. Hunting is a first rate suggestion. Even if the homeowner is not familiar, or at all interested, many are. Venison is very healthy and delicious, and there are large numbers of families who have grown up hunting, harvesting, preparing, and eating this delicacy. But of course, those who are not familiar with hunting likely think with concern about it being near their home, they are unfamiliar, and may find it uncomfortable. As a consequence, a well thought-out preparation to the endeavor will ease the most feared homeowner. Making a list of preferred criteria from a hunter is a start, and then overhearing someone speak of their hunts in a way that meets the criteria could lead to a proposition. If a homeowner has a great fear of firearms, then they can choose family or friends to hunt their land during the archery seasons. Even providing muzzleloader opportunities, or limiting to shotguns with slug ammunition will limit projectile trajectories to quite the minimum distances. Regardless, education on any subject matter will quickly reduce paranoid concepts about the unknown, and allowing someone to hunt your land can turn into valuable friendships that will offer great protection to your property. Nonetheless, selecting a specific hunter, or hunters, is the most effective means for reducing deer herds to healthy levels, minimizing devastation to crops and other plant life, and knowing your land is occupied by someone trustworthy and responsible who can provide much information concerning your property. 
   
    Not every property owner lives within an area deemed allowable for hunting opportunities. In which case, alternate methods are certainly required. Fencing is the best bet, especially electrical. Eight foot high is recommended, but we have all seen the occasional gravity-defying powerhouse pounce over such heights with ease. That is why its good to electrify an area in circumference to the fence. The two working together will protect the garden, but at significant costs. If the crops are semi-permanent, like fruit trees, then a fence is a smart idea. If not interested in devoting money and project, there are other options. 

    Dissuasion is tried by everyone, applying everything they hear is effective; from hair to mothballs, to vinegar, radios, pie-pans, scarecrows, predator urines, etc... I have personally used all of them, but it is all for nothing if persistence is not devoted as well. Even if they are all used in unison, all animals will slowly test the harassment levels of such products. Therefore, a single scarecrow will do if it is rotated to a different area regularly, or mothballs renewed to ensure the mammalian headache, or the radio jamming on clear evenings, predator urine placed on a cotton ball, even an unfavored cologne, perfume, or aftershave can work if applied randomly to various areas. The key here is persistence; if you slouch, the deer will take advantage of it. 

    These are just a few examples of many that can be effective at protecting a homeowner's property from deer. In the event that a professional is needed, then
 C.H. Animal Control can inspect to ensure that deer are in fact at fault, and then take steps, as well as educate the homeowner, for effective exclusion of these opportunistic animals and their behaviors.
This is my daughter, Emma Mae and I after a successful day in the woods. She was seven at the time, and safely harvested her deer with the '30-30, dropping it on the spot from almost 100 yds. We saved ourselves and neighbors some crop damage, helped thin out the herd to prevent starvation and disease, added two more hides to brain tan to the collection, and also attained some healthy food to last for a while. "Great Job, Em!"



                                                                                                      
   
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