Friday, February 15, 2013

Deer Damage

      We recently sustained damage to our hay stores from some mule deer that live in the area.  After complaining to the Game Warden about the loss of revenue the damage will cause us, we learned why it is important to keep deer out of your stack yard.  Turns out, not only the cows and our pocket books are being affected by our hay "buffet".

      According to a article called "Supplemental Feeding, Just Say No, on the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies Mule Deer Working Group website, alfalfa is not good for mule deer.  In the article Len Carpenter, Southwestern Field Representative with the Wildlife Management Institute, was quoted,

 "When mule deer feed across a large landscape, the microbes in their bodies adjust as their food sources gradually change. If a mule deer suddenly switches its diet from woody plants to high quality alfalfa hay, the microbes in its body do not have time to adjust, and it starves to death with a full stomach. Many a hay-fed mule deer has suffered this fate."

The Game Warden suggested that we use orange snow fencing to block the deer from entering  the stack yard.  We have complied.  We have also applied for reimbursement funds that the State of Wyoming supplies for agricultural producers who are affected by wildlife.  The funds are limited and are distributed on a first come first serve basis. 

Fore more information, visit Supplemental Feeding, Just Say NO!