FACTS ABOUT DEER AND FENCES: THE SMALL ANIMAL PROBLEM; DEER INSIDE THE FENCE
Introduction to Deer Fence Facts
Deer Jumping and Motives
Deer and Small Animals
Deer Inside the Fence
The Deer Fence Setting
Back to Deer Fence Information (General)
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This brings us to holes in plastic deer fences that are made by small animals. Ground hogs (woodchucks), rabbits, gophers, and various others with teeth capable of side-to-side scissors action (i.e., most small animals without canine teeth) can readily cut a hole in a polypropylene deer fence. Experience shows that over time a large share of polypropylene deer fences will be penetrated in this manner. It’s important that these holes be detected by periodic inspection of the fencing (see Deer Fence Maintenance) and that they be repaired–because otherwise they will be an open invitation for any deer that finds them to push through, enlarge them, and use them as a doorway through the fence. In fact, this is by far the most common way that polypropylene fencing is breached. Metal fences and polypropylene fences with metal skirts don’t have this problem.
Deer in a panic may do anything. They may leap a tall fence, as already noted, or they may harmfully charge right over someone who is trying to herd them out of an enclosure. Deer, even fawns, are really strong; being in an unfamiliar area enclosed by a deer fence makes them edgy; they don’t like being herded; and if you try to shoo them out they may panic and become dangerous–not because they want to hurt you, but because they have a powerful urge to escape. So if one day a deer manages to get into your fenced-in area, don’t go near it. Instead, call in your dog (that’s the first thing to do) and then open a gate if you can do so without alarming the deer; because chances are that if a gate is open, eventually the animal will leave.