Defeating mule deer in the Colorado foothills

by Hugh Gardner
(Idledale, CO)

No kind of repellents really work here at 6700' SW of Denver, foothills terrain, ideal habitat for mulies protected by private fences and government parks. We have the densest population of mountain lions anywhere for this reason. Mulies may be suffering in other parts of CO, but not here, where they are the most destructive garden raiders (after only elk)

After years of experimentation, I concluded that the only real answer is a 6-7' nylon netting perimeter.
This stuff is cheap, about $1 a linear foot, and fairly easily installed as a temporary (or permanent) fence using conduit pipe and telephone wire. It provides great opportunities for climbing plants and is virtually invisible in the landscape.

Eventually I secured the perimeter, and my major failing became forgetting to close the gate. I had to shoot a rogue mulie once, which after getting a taste of my goodies, kept finding a way to get back in and refused to be afraid of me.

Today my vinyl netting has turned into a "living fence" of vines and I worry about deer a lot less. Don't waste your time with repellents - go directly to the answer.

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