Hitting a deer with a car sucks. On your motorcycle it really sucks. I live in Sturgis South Dakota, and when I say we have deer everywhere, I really do mean EVERYWHERE. Leaving work last night From J&P Cycles Sturgis we had six deer in our parking lot. I know that sometimes it is impossible to avoid a collision but there are a few things we can do to try our best to avoid the four-legged critters.
Around 100 years ago whitetail deer were hunted near extinction, but the advent of modern wildlife management practices, the near eradication of predators like wolves and mountain lions and a decrease in subsistence hunting all conspired to a deer population somewhere around 30 million deer in the US. That’s a lot of deer, and they have adapted remarkably well to living around humans, you do not have to be in the country anymore to hit a deer.
The peak deer season is August through December, the start of Harvest in the Midwest will run the deer out of the fields and into the road. Although you can encounter a deer day or night, they are most active between dusk and midnight, then again at first light. Learn to identify edge habitat: prime food and water sources. Corn fields, creeks, and lakes are where deer are likely to be seen. If you’re riding through these areas during the night or in the mornings, keep your eyes open, have your lights on, hover over your brakes, and stay aware of your surroundings. Deer are herd animals If you see one cross the road keep your eye out for the rest of them. If a deer runs across the road in front of you don’t think you are out of the woods, it is very likely it will reverse course and run back out in front of you. Don’t ignore deer crossing signs. They are placed in areas that people frequently hit deer. Ride the center line to give yourself more time if a deer does jump out on you. Use common sense ride for the conditions and be prepared for them at all times. Wear your safety gear, Stay safe out there.
– Kenneth Harding