While wrought iron fencing can be a beautiful addition to any home, it can also pose some problems for deer.
Young deer (fawns and even yearlings that are too small to jump over the fence) often try to squeeze through the middle, according to information provided by Sierra Wildlife Rescue (SWR). Their shoulders are narrower than their hips and so they often get stuck halfway through a wrought iron fence. They don’t understand reverse and so they continue to push forward, often because they were following their mother and she’s now on the other side.
Left in this predicament, the fawn can cause itself serious injury or even death if not rescued quickly. The best thing to do is to approach the fawn from the front, cover its eyes with a hand towel to calm it down, and push it backward until it’s free. If it can then get up and run off, it will probably be fine. If it is unable to run off, then its injuries will require medical attention and you can call SWR for help. Dave Cook, a fawn rehabilitator with SWR who lives in Shingle Springs, can be reached at (530) 363-4848.
Cook can also be called for advice on how to make some adjustments to your wrought iron fencing that will make it less likely to become a hazard for deer as a starting point.
Tight-weave field fencing can be easily added to the bottom portion of the wrought iron to prevent fawns from even attempting to go through. If you have the sharply pointed style of wrought iron, a decorative railing can be installed along the top to prevent deer from becoming impaled if they try to leap over and don’t quite clear the fence, an occurrence that usually results in the deer’s death.
Assistance with wildlife-related issues involving other types of animals can be obtained by calling SWR’s general number, (530) 621-4661, to obtain a referral number so you can contact a specialist dealing with that specific animal.