Thursday, November 17, 2011
Deputy Carries Frightened Deer from Road to Safety
The incident last Friday was captured by the video unit of a patrol car used by Deputy Ryan Swartz of the Huron County Sheriff's Department. Swartz, who was responding to the deer-versus-vehicle call, was unable to coax the doe off the roadway.
When that didn't work Swartz simply carried the deer to one side of the road, then the other, and set the animal down. Eventually it regained its composure and trotted into a field. The entire episode lasted about 10 minutes.
The deputy said that when he first arrived he thought the deer was a decoy because it stood totally motionless. He told local TV Station WNEM TV5, "I figured as I walked up to it, it would just run off the road, but it just stood still. It wasn't moving at all. So I went up and I pet it and I was thinking that would get the deer off the road."
"What he did is certainly not recommended but he felt confident enough because of his many years of experience with deer," stated a news release issued by the Sheriff's Department.
The deputy could have put cones around the doe, called animal control, and said to himself, "I`ve done all that I can." But the compassionate and heroic deputy carried the stunned doe to the side of the road. He then carried it to the other side of the road, after deciding that the deer would be less likely to run back into the street from the opposite side.
Deputy Swartz went beyond the call of duty, and he should be promoted to Sheriff. A law enforcement officer should serve and protect not only people, but also the animals in his jurisdiction.
PETA honors people who go out of their way to help animals, Swartz deserves to receive an award from the animal rights organization.
Why do deer get transfixed by car headlights and just stand there in harm's way?
"Deer are crepuscular," said David Yancy, a deer biologist with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.
Their activity peaks within an hour or so on either side of sunrise and sunset, so their vision is optimized for very low light. When a headlight beam strikes eyes that are fully dilated to capture as much light as possible, deer cannot see at all, and they freeze until the eyes can adjust.
For more information on deer, visit the websites below:
Why do deer freeze in headlights