Conservation officers on the Sunshine Coast are urging residents to highlight any black mesh netting on their properties in order to save deer from getting tangled up in the plastic.
On Aug. 17 conservation officers were called out to help free a deer caught in some netting at a residential property on Thormanby Island.
“Several attempts by the property owner and three other individuals to release the deer from the netting failed,” said conservation officer Dean Miller. “One of the attempts resulted in an injury to one of the individuals.”
Miller used immobilization drugs to calm the animal and try to help free it, but even with the drug in its system Miller had to physically pull the deer to the ground to cut the netting off.
“The process of cutting took several minutes due to the extent of the entanglement,” he said.
While in the end this deer was freed and able to walk away from the incident, Miller said not every deer is so lucky.
“Deer can expire from the stress of being caught, trapped or captured especially when people or predators are present,” Miller said. “Luckily this event resulted in the safe release of an otherwise healthy young buck.”
This is the third event in two years of animals being caught in netting that conservation officers have been made aware of.
“Residents are advised to use or add some sort of visual contrast to their garden nets, such as flagging tape, to help animals identify these products before walking into them,” Miller said. “Deer are very strong and when caught or cornered can potentially be a threat to anyone who approaches.”
The public can call the conservation officer service with any issues concerning the safety of people and wildlife at 1-877-952-7277.