It’s The Time Of Year To Watch Out For Deer Crossing Michigan Roads
When you live in Michigan, its a pretty good idea to watch out for deer crossing roads all across the state, but in the fall the odds of seeing deer cross roads is much higher.
I spend my whole year while driving to and from work and anywhere I go looking for deer since I'm an avid deer hunter, but like anyone else, I don't like when they pop out right in front of my car, truck or motorcycle.
You don't have to be out in the country or the middle of nowhere to see deer crossing the road in West Michigan, it happens right near towns and cities, any area that has just a little woods, food and water nearby to sustain a small herd.
Archery season for Michigan deer hunters begins October 1. This means hunters will be entering woods and sometimes they jump deer when they are on their way to and from their stands that could lead to a deer crossing a road unexpectedly.
As you move more into the hunting season that is leading to the deer breading cycle, a lot of different things take place that has deer moving around more and doing a few unusual things to those who do not hunt deer. The male deer begin sparring with each other getting ready for when they get serious about finding a mate. Then later these sparring matches can become much more serious fights. Sometimes theses sparring matches or out and out fights can cause a male deer to run off from the scene and possibly crossing a road and creating the potential for their to be an accident. This type of behavior happens in October usually before Halloween.
Somewhere around Halloween, before or after, is when the male deer begin to start looking for mates. Most of the female deer at that time are not ready to breed which causes male deer to chase does and sometimes they cross roads. I've seen it a million times in late October when a female shoots out of a field or wood line to have a male deer on her tail. This behavior only increases in November.
Sometime in November is when most of the deer breeding is done, which means more bucks are chasing does and this is not something that just happens in the morning or the evening. In November this is a month long event that is 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
The majority of deer that are hit by vehicles in Michigan happen in October, November and December.
There is something else to add to this season's deer numbers, according to WZZM, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources says due to fewer hunters in the state, you will notice deer along the road. The DNR is warning that this large population of deer may lead to an increase in accidents on area highways.
Most people are not hunters and are not looking for deer until the run out in front of them while driving. The DNR is suggesting you drive more alert for deer during the next 3 months so if you see a deer crossing sign, pay attention. If you see woods and farm fields, pay attention. It helps at night to look for those green eyes. When your vehicle headlights hit deer eyes the shine green at night and helps locate them often when you can actually see the shape of their bodies at night.
If a farmer is harvesting corn or soybeans, deer will often wait to the last minute before exploding out of a farm field into a road.
Recently in Kalamazoo County a man was killed driving on US 131 when he tried to avoid hitting a deer and lost control of his vehicle.
So the best thing to do is, stay alert at all times for the next three months while driving and try and make that a habit. C'mon, we live in Michigan where a deer can cross the road anytime of year and any time of day.
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