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Be careful on the roads: Rutting season is here

Tuesday, October 11th 2022, 4:00 pm - Be vigilant and give lots of space to deer during this busy season.

Fall is here, and for deer, moose, and elk, that marks the start of rutting - or mating - season.

The mating season typically occurs between October and December, but some species may start to rut as early as July. During this time, bucks searching for a mate can be aggressive, sometimes chasing away other males with little regard for their surroundings.

If you're out for a hike and encounter an animal, give them lots of space. Experts recommend staying about 30 metres away from deer on any given day and doubling that, at minimum, during rutting season.


Visit our Complete Guide to Fall 2022 for an in-depth look at the Fall Forecast, tips to plan for it and much more!


A startled animal is more likely to charge, kick, and use its antlers in defence, all of which can cause serious injury.

Make sure to keep your pets leashed and back away slowly or climb a tree if you come face-to-face with an aggressive buck.

Don't run away or play dead. You can lessen the risk of startling an animal by making consistent noise while hiking, so wildlife has a head up that you're nearby.

Rutting season leads to an increase in animal-vehicle collisions, and the best way to avoid one is by following the speed limit. Driving too fast reduces your reaction time and could increase damage should a crash occur. Be vigilant - animals are most active at dusk, dawn, and during night hours when they are focused on finding a mate.

Here are some more tips on how to avoid a wildlife collision, courtesy of Nathan Coleman:

Thumbnail image by Cheryl Santa Maria using graphical elements from Canva Pro. Video production by April Walker.

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