ONEIDA COUNTY - Deer crashes in Wisconsin peak this time of year. Last November, there were nearly 4,000 crashes involving deer.
"November is an important time of the year for deer. It is the breeding season which we call the rut," said Wildlife biologist Michele Woodford.
Woodford explains why deer are so active this time of year.
"The bucks are looking to breed with does and they're going to be chasing. The does may or may not be ready so they're going to be chased quite a bit," said Woodford.
That means most deer won't look both ways before crossing the street… or darting into oncoming traffic.
"They're so prevalent that no matter how defensive you are, unfortunately, if you put on enough miles, you'll hit one," said Oneida County Sheriff's Deputy Terry Pockat.
Pockat is no exception to the rule.
"I've been with the Oneida County Sheriff's Office about four years, I didn't hit any, but now that I've been employed I've hit three," said Pockat.
He says if a deer runs in front of your vehicle, the worst thing to do is panic.
"Just take the impact and hit the deer in your lane of traffic," said Pockat. "It could be extremely hazardous if you get into another crash with another vehicle because you swerved or lost control."
Pockat says although hitting a deer can be a frightening experience, it's important to remain calm.
"If they can pull off to the side of the road and have no injuries, they should contact the sheriff's office," said Pockat. "Then we would have to do a state accident report, and we'd have them stay on scene until we arrive and verify the damage."
If a deer is killed in a crash, it's important to report that to the department of transportation. However, that deer could be yours to keep. You can register that deer from the crash site by visiting the DNR website on your phone.