FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) —As we begin a busy travel week, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission urges you to be mindful of deer on the roadways.
The AGFC’s Steve Dunlap said right now, the millions of deer in Arkansas are in pursuit of a mate. During mating season, deer are more active, and prone to crossing roadways they might normally avoid.
“Their desire or need for reproducing is stronger than their need to be aware of things like vehicles,” said Dunlap.
With deer on the move, local auto body shops are getting busier. The owner of Quality Collision Repair, Roy Lovell, said he gets two to three calls a day from drivers who’ve hit deer.
Lovell’s team is currently fixing a car with a smashed front end, broken headlight and shattered back windshield from an accident with a deer on the highway. He said collisions with deer usually cause the most damage when they happen on the highway.
Lovell said if a deer knocks out a driver’s mirror, lights or windshield it becomes undrivable, and some of these wrecks leave cars totaled.
“Many motorists have swerved to avoid collisions and ended up wrecking their own cars and getting hurt themselves,” said Dunlap.
Dunlap’s best advice when faced with a deer is to just slow down, but if you do hit one, he asks that you report it to the AGFC.
“We notate that in our records and it actually gives us good data for understanding population densities throughout the habitats. Then if it’s bad enough, you need to obviously call the police,” said Dunlap.
You can also use the dead deer for meat if you feel inclined to according to Dunlap.
Dunlap said deer move during the early mornings and evenings. He said if you see one deer, there’s likely another following it.