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Tips for Drivers During Deer Mating Season

Mating season of the deer

The arrival of autumn means that the deer mating season is here. While deer are in our area year round, drivers are asked to be extra careful during this time.

“So the males are definitely getting a little braver, their testosterone levels go up, they’re getting a bit more reckless if you will. And that’s where vehicles come in, ”said Brian Kraskiewicz, an ecologist for DuPage County’s Forest Preserve District. “Where a deer is usually more cautious during the year, not to say that there are no accidents, they are a little more cautious.”

During the mating season, females that are involuntarily pursued can run away from a buck and find themselves in traffic.

Tips for drivers

The top tips for motorists are to stick to the speed limit, slow down in areas with deer crossing signs, and watch their eyes as they reflect light. When a passenger is with you, they can act as an extra pair of eyes. When you get close to a deer and have time to slow down, try the horn and flashing your lights. However, sometimes there is no time to stop.

“Experts have said that it is better to hit the deer than try to avoid it. Because if you try to evade, it can lead to oncoming cars, you steer into the oncoming traffic, which could cause more damage to others or yourself, ”said Kraskiewicz.

According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were 13,787 car accidents in Illinois in 2020. Of these, 110 occurred in DuPage County and 322 in Will County.

This is why it is so important to be aware of your surroundings, especially when driving through a forest reserve or open country. The mating season begins this month and the peak period is mid to late November. You should be especially vigilant at dawn and dusk, when the animals are most active. If you meet a deer, stop and call 911. The mating season for deer can last until December.

Aysha Ashley Househ reported on Naperville News 17.

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