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The price of feeding deer is dear, warns countryside officers

Posted on Wednesday 28th February 2024
Deer - John Kraujalis NEWSROOM

Deer in Cannock Chase photographed by John Kraujalis

Feeding deer makes them vulnerable to disease, poaching and overpopulation, so rangers are urging country park users to buck the trend. 

Over the years, countryside officers have seen a rise in members of the public feeding the deer roaming around Cannock Chase. 

What may be seen as a harmless tasty treat puts the deer at risk of death, disease and dependency on humans. 

Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for communities and culture, Victoria Wilson, said:

“Feeding deer makes them less wild by making them reliant on easy food and more approachable to humans, making them a target for poachers. 

“It also leads to more deer vehicle collisions and speeds up their metabolism unnaturally leading to diarrhoea, dehydration and even death. 

“Please help us to protect these iconic animals of Cannock Chase by not feeding or approaching them and keeping dogs away from them. The natural vegetation provides the deer with all the food and nutrients they need to thrive.” 

With Spring fast approaching, people may encounter baby deer huddled in the grass. If you do spot a fawn, please do not attempt to pick it up because its mother may smell you and abandon the baby deer as a result. 

If you hit a deer or see one injured on the roadside, please call Staffordshire Police on 999. If a deer is dead on the roadside verge, please call 101. A deer warden will be notified in both cases. 

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