My deer rant


Been there, tried that…didn’t work… I did seem to have some success with milorganite. The deer still came in the orchard but did not come close to the trees with milorganite spread underneath. Then I got dogs…no more problems…YET.



Didn’t work for me.


CT’s regs are in some ways better than yours. That’s surprising. You’d think in Kentucky of all places there’d be enough political will to really do a good job managing the (over) population of deer.


Well, we are allowed 4 deer per person, one buck max in our zone 2. If you’re in z1, you can take as many as you want, with one buck max. The zones change each year, and the next county over from us became z1, so we might change in the next couple years.

Looks like CT private landowners get two full months of modern gun season, we just get two weeks, which also includes private lands. So, yes, looks like landowners in CT get a better deal. But, since we hunt our own land (about 50 acres), we don’t need a license or deer tag (CT requires both), but we still have to call in any kills.

Deer sightings have been rare this year in these parts, not expecting them to show up when rifle season starts next month, either. But, I’ve had some damage to some trees, so they’re around. We’ve hunted for the last 3 seasons, and got nada. Haven’t even got a shot at one with my rifle. Seen a few, both not close enough, or too small.


Nothing I can say other than $h!t. There are others as well and a small peach. Just can’t cage them all.


Totally sucks! Sorry to see that. I hate when animals ruin hard work…


Tried Irish Spring soap, human hair, Bounce dryer sheets and anything in between. I do not think it worked.

For convenience’s sake, I am now using Liquid Fence. Our deer pressure is low so it seems to work. It is expensive and needs to be applied often when it rains.


Sorry to see that, Bob. I transplanted a 5ft wild plum last year that survived through the winter, and it has similar looking damage. I don’t have it caged either, as it is quite large now, about 7ft tall. I’m hoping to use it in the future as a graft tree for peaches.


Sorry to see this I just updated a thread on electric fences because in my area the snow is down so things are heating up with rabbits , voles, deer etc… I dont blame the animals but like you I don’t want them doing that to my trees either. I’m thinking of my vegetable garden also but there are only turnips left in the ground this year.


Bob, simple black plastic hard netting from walmart works really well. Some of it is around my trees for 13 years. If the the tree busts through the netting I know it can make it as I make the ‘rounds of the netting at least five to six inches larger than the trunk. Has worked for 14 years!


I’ve been using that - don’t have to take the spirals off and on the trees every year now


At one time I had corrugated tubing around my trees. It was split down the side so I could take off as well as it would expand. Was a great place for squirrels to hide their nuts it actually worked well. Deer just seem to find my most vunderable ones out of all the choices. :imp:


Sorry, I mean Home Depot not Walmart. The stuff is really tough and has lasted a long time!!!


I haven’t tried the spiral wraps yet. Are you supposed to remove them every year? When? Some of the ones I was looking at had holes in them for ventilation. Just curious why they would need to be removed?


I don’t think the holes are enough to keep moisture from building up behind the wraps over the summer.

Also, they can constrict the trunk of the tree as it grows if not removed and replaced


I knew a guy who used those spirals to protect young fruit trees. He didn’t remove them one spring figuring he could just let them go. The trees grew and the spirals separated leaving exposed bark. He ended up losing all of those trees due to rodents chewing the bark. He had pretty spirals of bark/no bark all the way around his trees for a few feet :open_mouth:


I have ridiculous deer pressure in my neck of the woods. If you have an orchard or just some trees that need some serious protecting, I’ll say the nine foot apocalyptic fence does the trick. I’ve literally watched a pack of ten or so deer circle my fence for months trying to figure out how to get in :joy::man_facepalming:. If you have a small area to do, price isn’t too prohibitive.


I’ve been using the same fencing to create individual cages that work well when trees are small. It’s how I’ve been protecting my Persimmons and Pawpaws. Only pain is I have to drive stakes about a foot in or so around the caging to keep the wind from taking them. If you get a roll from a local fence supplier you can keep it under 100$ easy and can do quite a few trees.


I use that type of fencing around a lot of our trees. I use 4ft tall fencing with 1 x 2 inch holes. Last time I bought any it was about $70 for a 100ft long roll from Tractor Supply.


If you have a few acres (5+) contact Suburban Whitetail Management of Northern VA (SWMNV). They are 501©3 non-profit group of experienced bowhunters that carry liability insurance. Northern VA has a very long special urban archery season because of the overpopulation of deer. This group will come in free of charge and harvest deer on your property. They kill hundreds of deer each season and donate a large portion of the meat to Hunters for the Hungry(H4H) , another 501©3 non-profit that feeds the homeless. SWMNV members also donate money to H4H to cover the cost of processing the meat.

There are a few situations where they may take a property less than 5 acres if it is positioned well or if several neighbors are like minded and all grant access. These archers all go through pretty rigorous shooting qualification and instruction on hunting in the suburbs. Safety is their primary objective. Second is to keep the activity very low key. Property owners can limit days and times of hunting to meet their needs. These folks can come in street clothes and bag and remove the entrails. The transport deer covered.

Their primary areas include Prince William, Fairfax, and Loudoun counties. They do have some operations in other areas. It is not a fit for every situation, but it is very effective. Deer learn quickly when they are being hunted. They quickly adjust and will choose the gardens and landscaping of neighbors that don’t permit hunting.