The B.C. government is advising drivers to be aware of deer, elk and moose while travelling along roads and highways throughout B.C. amid rutting season.
Rutting season marks the annual mating time for deer, elk and moose and it brings a time of increased animal activity.
The period runs from late October to December, with the most activity seen in mid-November, according to the government.
“During the rut, male deer show increased interest in female deer, as well as increased aggression toward other male deer, often causing animals to move quickly with little regard for their surroundings,” a statement in a government press release reads.
The time of year brings a heightened risk for deer-vehicle collisions and drivers are being cautioned by the government “to pay extra attention, especially when driving at dusk, dawn and night hours” – a time of day when the animals are most active.
Then B.C. government recommends drivers be vigilant amid rutting season and, if a deer is spotted, watch for others because the animals seldom travel alone.
The province also points out that drivers should be more alert near wooded areas, tree lines, parks, golf courses and water sources such as lakes. Drivers are being advised to also note deer crossing signs and flashing wildlife-warning signs – particularly ones that have been recently installed, such as on Highway 18 in Vancouver Island’s Cowichan Valley.
“These signs are placed in areas with high numbers of reported deer-vehicle incidents. Heed these warnings and adjust travelling speed accordingly,” a statement reads.
The use of high beams at night is also being encouraged by the government as an added safety precaution.
If a deer is spotted near your vehicle, the province says use your horn with one long blast to frighten animals away.