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50 years ago there were almost NO deer in Chatham County and quail were plentiful

June 22nd, 2017 · No Comments

Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2017 11:58:08 -0400
From: “John Dykers M.D.”
Subject: Deer behavior

Dear Maryphyllis and fellow Chatlisters,

Good to know about blinking headlights and deer behavior. Your paragraph  is certainly true and beautiful:

“This past year the herds in our area have been much smaller and many of  the individuals in the herds have also been smaller.  Yet we humans are  multiplying exponentially throughout the state, country and planet. We’re not allowing enough forested space to prevail for our wild animals  to flourish.  As Native American tribes say, all life-forms are our  relatives, i.e., other humans, animals, plants, stone.  All are here for a purpose, and part of that purpose is to help the planet recycle itself and continue to support life.  ALL life.  Supporting all life on this planet ensures that it will continue to flourish many generations beyond our personal lives.”

However, while we humans may be able to coax this wild animal into our yards with feed and tame them to some degree, please don’t ever confuse this with “gentle” any more than my cattle are ‘gentle’. Mature deer are bigger and stronger than you and can and will maim or kill you in a flash if they feel frightened or cornered. Their head, horns and feet can be deadly, especially a buck in rut or a doe with fawn.

I have posted this history on Chatlist before, but 50 years ago there were almost NO deer in Chatham County and quail were plentiful. We cattlemen ran off the quail by converting there fallow weed fields with lots of seed and cover into beautiful fescue pasture which the deer love but are toxic to the quail. The forested space is cover for both but the feed source for deer is forage and the birds need seed and insects.

I don’t know: do quail eat ticks???  Deer surely carry them and have brought us several new species that carry multiple new viral and rickettsial diseases that are dangerous and deadly. Maybe Dr. Marcia-Gibbons can tell us or Layton Long or other knowledgeable folks at the Health Dept.

John Dykers

Tags: Agriculture · Animals · Musings · Siler City

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