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22/10/2021

Warning about risk of deer causing collisions during rutting season

Vigilance urged on deer season

FILE PHOTO

Local road users have been urged to be aware of the risk of deer causing collisions — as the traditional rutting (mating) season begins.
The Irish Deer Commission called on motorists to be vigilant at dawn and dusk during October, November and December when deer are most active, particularly in high risk areas close to woodlands and mountains.
The experts called on drivers to reduce speed immediately if they see a deer and to dip headlights as these will cause the animal to freeze.


An Irish Deer Commission spokesman said: “Kildare would be considered a blackspot due to its extensive motorway network that passes through traditional deer habitat, and proximity to Co Wicklow.
“County Kildare is unique in that is one of the few counties that has resident populations of all three deer species present in Ireland – Red, deer, Sika and Fallow deer.
“Areas such as Kilcullen, Naas and Monasterevin would be well known blackspots for deer vehicle collisions.”
 Data in 2018 showed over 100 reported accidents involving deer nationally, which included injuries to drivers. A spokesperson for the Irish Deer Commission said: “It’s autumn and in our forests and across our mountains, tensions are rising as the rutting or
deer breeding season gets under way, the time of the year when male deer are driven by an urge to reproduce.
“From late September until early November the clash of antlers will be heard as males show off their virility to potential mates and, like gladiators entering an arena, they parade around showing off their armoury of antlers.
“This is also a time when there is an increased incident of road traffic accidents involving deer as male deer go in search of females and younger males are ousted by dominant males forcing deer to cross roads.”

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