Deer are most active this time of fall. Crops are being harvested and deer breeding season is in full swing. The Nebraska Park and Game Commission has tips to help drivers avoid deer-vehicle accidents and reduce the risk of injury or vehicle damage.
- During the breeding season, males become more active looking for females. Males are bolder, less cautious, and more susceptible to vehicle collisions. Deer movement peaks each day around dawn and dusk.
- Anticipate the possibility of a deer in the road and plan how to avoid a collision. Be prepared to stop suddenly, but braking too hard or swerving can cause you to lose control and roll over.
- Wear your seat belt.
- When driving near shelter belts, forests, or streams, especially in the late afternoon or early morning, slow down and watch for deer. Keep your headlights on if there is no oncoming traffic.
- When you see a deer, assume there will be others in the same area.
- Deer often appear disoriented or confused by headlights. Some react by freezing in the light, some launching themselves into the path of the vehicle, and others shooting out. Honk your horn and turn on your headlights to scare away the deer. If there is other traffic on the road, activate your hazard flashers and hit the brakes to alert other drivers of potential danger.
- Many places where deer-vehicle collisions occur are marked with deer crossing signs.
- If a deer is struck, the driver may take possession of the deer, then must contact Game and Parks within 24 hours and has 48 hours to receive a salvage tag from a conservator officer or designee. See the list of conservancy officers at OutdoorNebraska.gov/ConservationOfficers.