Tracking collars on deer causing concern in northern N.B.
Tracking collars that are chafing deer in northern New Brunswick seem to be rubbing some residents the wrong way.
Jason Carter of Saint-Quentin, N.B., captured a video of a collar appearing to be irritating a deer's neck.
He’s calling it alarming.
“There are ways to do things. This is not one of them,” says Carter. “They're shaving their neck at least 12 inches wide all around. What is this doing to the deer? Do they not have fur for a reason?”
The monitors are part of a study being conducted by the government of New Brunswick and Maine, as well as JD Irving Ltd. and the University of New Brunswick.
“It’s a fairly large project related to radio collaring deer to find out about habitat use, movement, where they spend the winter, where they spend the summer, how big an area they use,” says UNB wildlife biologist Dr. Graham Forbes.
Dr. Forbes says about 80 deer have collars on them in northern New Brunswick, and that they've been trying to find the deer that have had neck irritation.
“We managed to take off all the ones we could and there's still one more remaining,” says Dr. Forbes. “We've talked to some vets and the feeling is there is no great concern for heat loss or damage, but it doesn’t look good.”
The collars will be used again. Forbes says the irritation has only been found in a small number of deer.
“We always make sure we have a two-finger spacing. That is sort of the rule of thumb,” says Dr. Forbes. “We'd rather have it too loose than tight because deer’s neck might change over the course a year and swell up with fat reserves, so we don't want animals to choke.”
Jason Carter isn’t happy the collars will used again and is calling for a new method in tracking deer around the area.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Nick Moore.