During the months of May and June deer give birth to their fawn. To protect the young animals from foes, the does put them down in meadows. While the does flee if danger arises, the fawns crouch in the long grass. This behaviour can have fatal consequences during the mowing of the meadows and each year many fawns get killed by the sharp blades of the mowers or mutilated.
The League for Nature and Environment Medelby “Naturschutzring Medelby und Umbegung e.V.” has given itself to the mission of protecting the fawns from this gruesome fate. In cooperation with farmers, hunters and contractors they are taking different suitable preventive actions.
In some cases, putting up game-scarecrows the night before the mowing and also searching the meadows for fawns have proven useful. Once the farmer informs the volunteers of “Naturschutzring Medelby und Umgebung e.V.” about the date of mowing, they put up the game-scarecrows. These signal danger to the does that then bring the fawns to safety overnight. The next morning the volunteers remove the scarecrows before the farmer begins to mow.
Safer then scaring away
The scaring-away method is partly effective; however, it is not a guarantee that the fawns are being saved. To make sure all fawns are saved, the organization plans to buy a drone with an integrated thermal imaging camera. With this technology, all fawns and other animals can be spotted easily and brought to safety before the mowing.
Saving fawns on 37 acres per hour
Modern technology allows the volunteers to search large areas in a very short time. But the advanced solutions also have a higher price. A fully equipped system costs approximately 10,000 € plus operating costs for insurances and trainings. r2p contributed 500 € for the acquisition of this system.