By Harry Mottram: Bloomfield is proving to be the new centre for exotic wildlife this summer. First there has been a peacock shimmering its way around the gardens of the south Bath suburb. Now it’s the turn of a Roe dear or Capreolus capreolus to give it its full Latin name that has been popping into the local gardens – to the delight of some and perhaps not so delight of others. A female or doe is pictured here visiting a garden in Bloomfield Road and the image was posted on the Bloomfield FaceBook site.
Herbivores such as Britain’s smallest deer the Roe deer (if you exclude the invasive Muntjac and Chinese Water deer) do like to chomp on leaves, berries and er… well geraniums, sugar snap peas and anything else the good gardeners of Bath provide for them. It’s one of the hazards of having areas of woodland close by off Englishcombe Lane and Wellsway. There are all manner of devices to frighten away cats, birds, squirrels and moles but not as far as we know of deer – in an effort to protect our gardens and their specimen plants and prized vegetables there’s an opportunity for an enterprising inventor – a device that emits the sound of a passing lion perhaps.
Joking apart, Roe deer are found in most areas of this country and are no strangers to parks and large gardens – and are often seen in the headlights of cars in the lanes in and around the city. They are naturally very shy and have a fear of dogs in particular – who apart from man are their main threat since wolves have long since disappeared from the countryside. Unlike their larger cousins the fallow and red deer they don’t produce much in the way of antlers. The males or bucks sport two two pronged antlers which are used for fighting but since they are short are also used to scratch away at snow covered ground in search of grass and leaves. Although it’s become apparent that they are also partial to geraniums.
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