Monday, July 9, 2012

Oh Deer!

As I was leaving my office for lunch, this is what walking through the clinic parking lot, stopping to peeking at me through the bushes:

You can sorta see the other one behind the bush to the right, this little guy or gal has a twin! Mom is off to the far right past the bush. It was like everything stopped around me while they sauntered off, no traffic noises, no voices from the clinic or up the street. I'm lucky I remembered my iPad to take a quick picture of them I was so mesmerized watching them pick their way through the yard! 

Living in Kenora sometimes feels so far from everything. One of the bonuses of living here is seeing something like this up close. The 'locals' (i.e. folks that were born and raised here) and anyone who's lived here longer than a couple of years thinks of the deer population in town as pests. There are so many the town of Kenora has actually created a pamphlet on how to manage deer in your backyard. My husband told me I'd get tired of seeing them all over town and eventually see them as a nuisance too. I'm happy to say it hasn't happened yet!

Deer outside my husband's office at lunchtime in January.
We take preventative measures against their inquisitive taste buds and other deer habits that tend to destroy flower beds and newly planted trees. I planted an apple tree in our front yard this year and wrapped it in a 4 foot high bird wire fence to keep them from nibbling the tender new leaves on it. I had actually bought the fencing before I picked out the tree! I planted tomatoes and herbs in pots on our deck that is not accessible to the yard. We don't put the garbage out the night before (also because of the ravens around here... helpful birds that they are for cleaning up the dog poop, but they do make a mess of garbage!). The bucks will also rub their antlers in the late summer to get rid of the velvet on them. It seems the newest of trees are prime targets for them. I'm also very careful of the bucks in rutting season. They have been known to charge at runners and dogs. Knowing all these things about the deer just makes me more cautious, not to dislike them. They are wild animals after all. Just because they look cute, doesn't mean they are friendly!

One particularly memorable encounter a couple of weeks ago: Romeo and I were at the end of our run heading back up the hill towards our neighbourhood. Up ahead I saw a doe with two yearlings cross the road ahead of me to the opposite side of the street. Very common, 'nothin' to see here' kind of moment. We passed them with barely a glance in their direction from Romeo. A few seconds later, I can hear the 'clip, clip, clip' of deer hooves behind me on the sidewalk. I turn around and the doe had crossed back to our side and was following us. I stopped, she stopped. I turned back to my running and heard the same thing again! I turned back to her again, she stopped, looking right at me and kind of around at Romeo (who still had no interest in her). She was quite a bit closer at this point, so I didn't move. After a few more seconds, she bounded off into the grass and bush on the side of the road. It was like she couldn't understand what the dog was doing running without interest in her!

Somehow I just can't see myself tiring of them!

What kind of wildlife encounters have you had on your runs?
I used to run on a trail system in my hometown that had a few bears that lived in the area. I've had two times where I've come around the corner of a trail into the path of bear. Once a cub that ran in the opposite direction, the other time the bear didn't seem to notice me. Both times I back tracked the way I came, just in case!
Have you ever been really frightened by an animal, domesticated or not?
I've been chased by a Great Dane. Yeah. It was scary. They still make me a bit nervous and I'm a dog lover. 


  1. Just saw deer on a recent run and a mama turkey w/ her babies!

    On a little scarier note, recent coyote sighting :(

    1. One year there was a family of coyotes living on a ridge above a trail I liked to run. I used to see lots of scat, but never a coyote sighting. It made me a bit more cautious running around there!


Thanks for reading my blog! I'd love to hear from you so go ahead and leave me a comment!