PDT Staff Writer
The Ohio State Highway Patrol and other law enforcement officers have issued a reminder to motorists to be on the watch for deer now more than ever.
Deer cross highways, mainly at night, to get from their bedding areas to feeding areas and back. The more frequently used crossings are marked by road signs giving motorists a heads up.
The highway crossings become more frequent during the "rut," or mating season, when deer may dart out of the woods anywhere, not just at the marked crossings.
The mating season for white-tailed deer begins toward the end of October and runs nearly through the whole month of November. At this time, bucks throw caution to the wind in pursuit of the does.
A statement from the patrol states drivers should slow down, especially when driving at dusk and dawn, and keep glancing at the woods and fields beyond the shoulders as much and as often as they safely can.
Headlights should be kept on "bright" as long as they don't "blind" drivers in oncoming cars or those in cars going the same direction as you are. They may be close enough that the bright lights reflect from their side and rearview mirrors and hinder their ability to see ahead. Wildlife officials in both Ohio and Kentucky are offering hunters a more generous bag limit on whitetails during this fall's hunting seasons. Hunters are encouraged to buy extra permits that allow them to take several does in an effort to limit a herd that is growing too large for proper management .
Insurance companies are complaining to wildlife officials about the deer population because of the staggering number of deer-car collisions on the highways.
Farmers, too, are not happy with the destruction caused by deer feeding in corn and other crop fields.