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The City of Beachwood and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife have been working together to address issues pertaining to deer in our community. Here are some facts:
• Deer look for easy sources of food. To protect your garden, install a 3–4 ft. barrier (vinyl, hardware cloth, etc.) with the first foot of the barrier underground to keep the small critters out. On the corners of the garden install posts that reach 7 ft. off the ground. Run a single wire at 7 feet. Periodically hang ribbon to act as a visual to the deer. Deer have bad depth perception and they will not jump between the hard fence and the top wire.
• A “peanut butter fence” will deter deer. This electric fence wire strung about 2 ft. off of the ground with a piece of foil wrapped over the line with peanut butter smeared on it will keep deer away. When deer approach, the smell will attract them to lick it, thereby giving them a non-lethal shock. Simply move the fence to the areas that deer are browsing.
• Various sprays deter deer from eating plants. Cayenne pepper can also be used by spraying plants with some water and then generously dusting them with the pepper. The hotter you make the plant the less likely the deer will eat it.
• Choose plants that tend to be less palatable. Keep in mind that if a deer is hungry enough, there is no plant that it “will never eat.”
If the techniques mentioned above are not working, contact the Division of Wildlife at 330.644.2293.