BEND – At the center of the state, Bend is more or less ground zero for collisions with deer during fall migration. So, the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) is advising motorists to be on the lookout for migrating mule deer on US97 and other Oregon highways
“Deer are embarking on their fall migration from the eastern slopes of the Cascades to their winter grounds near Fort Rock and Christmas Valley”, said Cidney Bowman, wildlife biologist for ODOT. “Highway 97 lies directly in their path so motorists need to be alert for deer on or near the highway”.
The bulk of the deer migration starts about mid-October and extends until early-December in Central Oregon. Most of the animals travel during the dawn and dusk hours, but motorists can expect to see them at any time.
ODOT is putting up notices on message boards on and near the highway to advise motorists to be extra cautious during the migration and taking other steps to alert motorists to the influx of deer. “We want to be sure drivers know what to expect on the highway during deer migration”, said Bowman, adding, “We’re doing what we can and motorists need to do what they can too.”
For more on deer migration and the impact on Central Oregon Highways visit: http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/GeoEnvironmental/Pages/Wildlife.aspx