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Deer On The Move Earlier Due To Drought

August 20, 2012, 9:53 PM by Mike Simundson

Deer On The Move Earlier Due To Drought

We all know the drought is taking a toll on crops in KELOLAND, but it could also be affecting your daily commute.

Dry weather has farmers in the fields early this year cutting corn for silage and that means herds of deer are on the move.

A beautiful sunset on East Rice Street can turn dangerous in the blink of an eye.

"Rice Street is one of the highest, between Sioux Falls and Brandon, is one of the highest deer crossing areas we have, if not in southeast South Dakota, maybe the whole state," Ron Schauer with South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks said.

But it's not just east Rice street. The drought has deer starting to move all across KELOLAND.

"If you see people cutting silage that should be another indicator to you that hey, there maybe deer in the fields," Schauer said.

Schauer says you should slow down if you see deer by the road because there might be more.  But he says the most important thing to remember is to avoid swerving.

"You can fix a car, but if you swerve and go off the road and roll and get ejected and severely hurt, it's much harder on the people than the vehicle," Schauer said. 

Schauer says many times drivers who swerve wind up hitting the deer anyway.  And even though herds started moving early this year, the problem is not going away anytime soon.

"It's probably going to get busier or worse before it gets better," Schauer said.

Schauer says a special archery season by East Rice Street is helping to thin the herd, but it will take a few years to get the numbers where Game, Fish and Parks want them.

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