Avoid feeding and trampling damage by fallow deer

Damwild steht auf einem Feld The ideal habitat for fallow deer is a varied landscape structure with fields, meadows plus small and large forest areas. This can be observed due to its daytime activity in the fields. Increasing disturbances have, however, also turned it into a nocturnal animal. One often sees fallow deer in larger herds which – with the exception of the rutting season – is separated by sex. Agricultural land with an attractive range of grazing is intensively used for grazing by the often large herds. They especially love lactic ripe wheat and oats, potatoes or young maize plants. This results in considerable damage due to feeding and trampling.

Electric fences have proven to be effective in deterring deer, but they do have to be more elaborate for fallow deer as opposed to for other cloven-hoofed animals. There’s no way past the use of a powerful 12 V AKO fence device with a fence voltage of around 4000 to 5000 volts and an impulse energy of 1 to 5 Joules. Excellent grounding is a basic prerequisite for the effectiveness of any electric fence.

The defence fence must be at least 1.60 m in height. A wooden post should be sunk at the corners of the field and, depending on the fence length, halfway along each side of the field, to which insulators are screwed. Plastic posts with integrated wire eyelets are installed in between (depending on the terrain) at intervals of 7 to 8 metres depending on the height of the fence. The wires are tensioned on the wooden posts, whereas they only need to be inserted into the eyelets of the plastic posts.

Fallow deer defence fence

Fallow deer defence fence
  1. White-blue TopLine Plus fence wire
  2. Blue TopLine Plus fence tape
  3. Aluminium strips or rags
  4. Fence connection cable with alligator clips
  5. Signal light
  6. Warning sign
  7. Insulators

The following must be observed: The distance from wire to wire must be close, preferably 15 cm to a maximum of 20 cm. Otherwise fallow deer will jump between the wires. It has proven useful to use eight wires in ground intervals of 20, 40, 60, 80, 100, 120, 140 and finally 160 cm. Additional rags do not help much in deterring fallow deer. They quickly get used to them.

Two pieces of advice:

a blue plastic signal tape helps to make an electric fence visible as an obstacle. However, with fallow deer there is a risk – stags can get their antlers caught in the plastic tape and end up with it wound around them as they try to flee. Electric fence netting is also not without risk when it comes to fallow deer, as stags can also get their antlers caught in this. AKO therefore recommends using a WildNet to deter fallow deer.

“The social, diurnal fallow deer likes to group together in large herds of stags or does. Because of this, major damage to crops can occur in a short time. Fallow deer like to slip through the wires, so keep the distance between wires short. This must be taken into account during installation. Experienced deer then quickly learn what effect electric fences have.”

GAME MASTER JENS KRÜGER – professional hunter, forester, outfitter, author