Appreciating deer in the garden

'The deer are an important reason for observing the speed limits and remind us that we can enjoy something special living on this little island just far enough away from the city. They are welcome'

We called the deer Cinnamon; Cindy for short. We can’t tell you whether Cindy is male or female, and he/she/they could be more than one deer who happen to look alike. We live over at Bowen Bay. I hope those of you who drive through Bowen Bay drive slowly because the deer often cross the road without looking. Cindy is probably one of these deer or maybe more.

Cindy has been through our place many times this year while we have been around respecting COVID-19. When they nibbled too much at some of the early spring growth in our ornamental garden a little Bobbex capsaicin cocktail added too much spice for their taste and they moved on to other pastures but came back here frequently through the early summer months; once with a gorgeous spotted youngster (photo). Once the growth in the garden had matured, they lost interest and very little pepper spray has been needed. 

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A spotted fawn standing beside ferns
A fawn who accompanied Cindy to the garden earlier this year. - Peter Wing

The other evening I walked by the lawn to the workshop. Cindy, lying on the grass a respectable two metres from the pathway watched me walk past without feeling the need to rise. On my part, I walked quietly, murmuring soothing comments.

We have no enclosing fences around our property. Why should we? We don’t have any veggies or fruit to protect. So much of what is on the lot is the same vegetation as the forest outside, except for a small garden area. The deer wander through from time to time, and we like their presence. When we have walked through some of the new developments up the hill, there are some very elaborate and expensive fences keeping the deer out and proudly proclaiming “private property.” 

The people who live within these fences are missing a rich part of Bowen life. The deer are with us year-round and we enjoy their company. Sure, they litter the place with treats but it only takes a moment to move those on so they don’t get walked into the house. The deer are an important reason for observing the speed limits and remind us that we can enjoy something special living on this little island just far enough away from the city. They are welcome. 

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