High reports of cyclist collisions with deer unique to the CRD

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WatchIt's a problem some, say is unique to greater victoria: cyclists crashing with deer. It's a strange and dangerous problem, and with mating season around the bend, it may just get worse in the month ahead. Kori Sidaway reports.

A pair of bucks were caught duelling it out in Ross Bay Cemetery this week. But they’re just practicing.

Rutting season begins in earnest at the end of October. Right now though, you’ll notice them moving around a lot more.

“They’ve been a menace…see them all over the place,” said Oak Bay resident Margaret Molozzi.

“You have to watch out,” said Linda Dunn who lives in Victoria.

“There are times, especially when it’s dark that it’s very hard to see them,” added Lynne Walker.

The 2019 mating season comes just as Oak Bay’s experimental birth control program is well underway.

“Oak Bay is currently in week 3 or 4 in our deer immuno-contraception program. So far the team has applied immuno-contraception to around 55 deer in total,” said Oak Bay Mayor Kevin Murdoch

The hope is population control for a region that has long faced a unique deer problem, especially if you’re behind the wheel.

“We have quite a few collisions and near-collisions in our community. As a region, it’s quite a problem,” said Murdoch.

It’s an even bigger hazard when you’re on only two wheels

“There are situations where you’re cycling and you don’t see them until it’s too late,” said cyclist Robyn Montgomery.

“Two seconds earlier and there could have been a collision.”

According to BikeMaps.org, the top three reasons behind a bike crash in the CRD? Train tracks, left turns, and deer.

And they say the bike collisions with deer here, are disproportional compared to other regions. And most of them result in significant injury.

And the dangerous deer have local leaders warning to be careful.

“Certainly riding your bike at dawn and dusk right now is a little dangerous,” said Murdoch.

If you have a near miss, or collision, you can report it at bikemaps.org, or local council.

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