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Wildlife centre warns about dangers of wrought-iron fences after deer dies

A local wildlife group is raising awareness about how wrought-iron fences can injure wildlife after animals have died or been severely injured trying to hop over these fences.  

Warning: This story contains a graphic image

A deer was attempting to hop over a wrought-iron fence near St. Peter's Seminary this weekend when its back legs were caught and impaled in the structure. The deer was put down due to the extent of its injuries. (CBC)

A local wildlife rehabilitation centre is raising awareness about the dangers of wrought-iron fences after some animals have died or been severely injured. 

This past weekend, a deer was attempting to hop over a wrought-iron fence near St. Peter's Seminary when its back legs were caught and impaled in the structure.

"When we put fences up, we don't intend to be malicious with them and we don't want them to kill animals, but sometimes they do," said Brian Salt, founder of Salthaven Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Centre. 

"I'd like to see greater awareness that these fences are capable of doing this type of damage."

Salt adds the occurrence is not uncommon and happens throughout the seasons. While deer get caught trying to hop fences, fawns sometimes get stuck trying to squeeze through them. 

When the organization is called to assist an animal in these circumstances, Salt says it still takes time to help them. The organization is not able to administer any anesthetics to get them off the fence before the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources arrives, he said. 

In the case of this deer, due to the extent of its injuries, it was put down shortly after. 

"This is something that is avoidable," Salt said. 

The organization is encouraging people to consider other types of fencing, including fences without spikes, or modifying their existing fence to allow wildlife to safely get over them. 

"Anybody with any sensibility toward the environment at all would probably think twice if they knew what was happening out there about putting up a wrought-iron fence," he added. 

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