Broken fencing risk to deer

Tracey GrayLandowners are being asked to make sure they tidy up disused and broken fencing after reports of deer being horrifically tangled up in barbed wire fencing.Tracey Gray

Landowners are being asked to make sure they tidy up disused and broken fencing after reports of deer being horrifically tangled up in barbed wire fencing.

A passer-by came to the rescue of one deer which had become tangled up in barbed wire fencing in woodland at Mile Plain Plantation just off the Reepham Road in Attlebridge, next to the Marriot's Way Footpath.

But there are worries others could be at risk and landowners are being urged to make sure they clear away any potentially harmful bits of disused fencing.

The deer was stopped in distress by passer-by John Allaway, who saw it had become caught up in wire from a neglected piece of fencing on Thursday, December 17.

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He called Hallswood Animal Sanctuary as the centre was only a mile away and asked for the owner, Lyz Hallswood's help in freeing the animal.

Mr Allaway, who lives in Drayton, said: 'The deer we rescued had its antlers just as badly tangled in the wire, and had probably been trapped like that for several days.

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If I hadn't spotted it, and if Lyz hadn't very skilfully managed to release it, it would almost certainly have died that night, as it was very thin.

'In the same area were a number of other deer bones and sections of skeleton, so I think that deer have been getting caught in the wire here for a long time.'

He said by the side of one skeleton were craters in the ground which one of the deers had dug while trying to free itself.

He added: 'It must have taken the other deer well over a week to die a horrible, slow death. It had eaten all the bark off the tree, and had scratched a deep crater in the ground beneath the tree, trying to find food after it had eaten everything in reach on the surface.

Sophie Wilkinson, regional press officer for the RSPCA, said: 'Unfortunately this is quite common where there is disused or damaged fencing which has not been removed.

'We always put an appeal out to landowners to make sure they properly maintain any fencing and dispose of any disused fencing.'

Norfolk County Council said the matter is not their responsibility, and Broadland District Council said the same.

Do you have a story for the Norwich Evening News? If so contact reporter Tracey Gray on 01603 772418 or email

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