Does protect young fawns; ODFW recommends keeping dogs on leash
Reports of aggressive behavior by deer in Ashland and other areas of Jackson and Josephine counties are on the rise, according to the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife (ODFW).
Ashland problem areas are reported between North Mountain Avenue and Oak Street north of Siskiyou Boulevard, and the area immediately surrounding Southern Oregon University.
Other aggressive deer were reported in east Medford, Eagle Point and Grants Pass.
In Gold Hill, a dog was killed by a doe earlier this month, according to ODFW officials.
At this time of year in the Rogue Valley, black-tailed does are raising their fawns and will protect them against dogs, people, or other perceived threats.
Bucks, more likely to be aggressive during the rut in October-November, can be aggressive all year when they are being fed, officials said.
Wildlife biologist Mathew Vargas says many Ashland-area residents enjoy the urban deer population and tolerate deer eating their landscaping — until deer become aggressive. Vargas advises dog owners to consider not walking their dogs for a few weeks in areas where aggressive deer are being reported.
ODFW recommends residents in these areas take the following steps:
- Don’t approach deer — keep your distance.
- Keep dogs on a leash.
- Don’t pick up fawns or walk near them — does are very protective. Does may leave fawns alone for a time to go off and forage on their own.
- Don’t feed wildlife. It habituates them to people, making them less afraid and more aggressive.
- Stay alert, especially at dawn and dusk. Be aware of your surroundings and areas where deer may be.
Report any aggressive deer behavior to ODFW’s Central Point office by calling 541-826-8774. Reports can also be made to the Ashland Police Department’s online tracking tool for sighting of cougars, bears and aggressive deer at https://gis.ashland.or.us/cougar/.