Bright and early this morning, through the bedroom window, a disturbing sight.
Deer. En famille. Mama, Papa and Baby deer wandering up the drive as casually as you like. By the time we’d retrieved the camera Baby deer had plumped for Lonicera off the extensive breakfast menu. Worse was to come.
“OY, that’s my Azalea. AND ‘The Lark Ascending…!!!”
I thumped my fist hard against the window. Mama raised her head briefly before taking a further mouthful of The Lark. Thorns and all. We fumbled for the key to open the window… “OYYYY!!!!” The female deer took off down the hillside, leaping the newly cleared edge of the lawn en route for the river. The other two fled in the opposite direction, presumably back up the drive.
And then the guilt sets in. I’d separated the mother from her fawn. She paced anxiously for a few moments unsure what to do next. With the benefit of a leafless woodland I could watch her running aimlessly about. Eventually she jumped the river and started up the valley on the other side. 50 yards or so later she crossed back to our side and, much to my relief, the fawn ran down to meet her. Such a touching moment when their noses met. Phew.
But it does give us a problem. Even if it were affordable, fencing the entire garden wouldn’t be the way to go. Over 200 yards of the boundary is riverbank and deer fencing has to be high. It would feel like a prison. Protecting each and every plant isn’t a realistic way forward either. Anyone have any ideas?
Mike, naturally, has his own solution. “There’s always the V word*..”
I dealt him my best glowering look. “No. Besides, it’s probably illegal.”
“I doubt it. Just a contravention of the local bylaws. Bylaws put in place by Mrs rusty duck.” Oh why is my desire for a wildlife sanctuary so frequently being tested. “But there’s another problem anyway.”
“What.” Mrs rusty duck has now taken on a sulk.
“We don’t have a big enough freezer.”
*Venison. Deer meat.