A lovely wild animal being spotted with increased regularity in the Old Town and elsewhere is the white-tailed deer.
On social media, residents frequently post sightings of the animals as they wander through town, sometimes feeding on plants in residents’ gardens. My favourite sighting last year was when several emerged from a ditch, crossed the road in front of me as I was driving, and disappeared on the other side to continue on their way following one of the creek beds that go through the Old Town. I was able to drive around the block and photograph them as they emerged from the creek bed, crossed another road to once again disappear into the undergrowth on their trip through town.
Deer can be commonly spotted on the Commons, and there appears to be a sizeable herd in that area, as well as along Lakeshore Road in the former national Department of Defence properties and into the Niagara Shores Park. On one early morning walk at Niagara Shores, I encountered one on the trail in front of me. It, however, spotted me first and disappeared quickly into the surrounding forest.
The other morning, I spotted these two feeding quietly in the area of Fort George. I understand their presence on the Commons, and in the forest near the Commons, may be one of the concerns that Parks Canada has with the off-leash dog area currently under review. But I’ve never heard of dogs chasing the deer. Coyotes do, if the opportunity presents itself. But that is nature.