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Popular Walking Trail In Region Reopens After Deer Attacks

The Greenlink Trail in New Canaan.
The Greenlink Trail in New Canaan. Photo Credit: New Canaan Land Trust

A popular Fairfield County walking trail has reopened after several walkers were attacked by deer.

The incidents in New Canaan took place on the Greenlink Trail associated with the New Canaan Land Trust and were first reported on Thursday, June 9.

The first incident took place when two women were walking the trail and came upon an aggressive doe and a yearling, also on the trail who would not move, said New Canaan Police Animal Control Officer Allyson Halm.

One of the deer charged with women and jumped over them, causing bruises and scrapes, Halm said.

The women reported the incident to Halm who went to the trail and found the deer. 

"I used an air horn to attempt to scare them off, but they didn't move," Halm said. "Which is unusual."

Halm contacted the nature center and the land trust to warn them of the aggressive deer. Both put up signs at the entrance to the trail warning walkers of the deer, she added.

The next day she was notified of another incident, while at the same time she received an email from a couple who said the woman had been attacked and pummeled in the back by the deer while walking. She was severely bruised and battered from the attack, Halm said.

"In my 18 years as an animal control officer I have never had these experiences with deer," Halm said. "They (the deer) are adjusting to the habitat."

Halm said the couple were walking with dogs and the man mentioned seeing a fawn, which is probably what had the doe so upset with walkers, she added.

The trail, which is narrow with deer fencing on both sides, was closed by the land trust after the experiences for several days.

Halm and land trust officials walked the trail on subsequent days and did not see the deer or have any problems, Halm said,

"This is a good example of how people in nature who come in contact with wildlife need to scare them instead of stopping to take a picture," she added.

That includes making loud noises to scare the animals.

The same "hazing" should be done if you encounter a coyote, bear, or bobcat in the wild, Halm said.

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