CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – The fall breeding season for moose and deer has now begun, meaning these large mammals are on the move and possibly crossing streets.

According to data from MassDOT, car accidents involving deer dramatically spike in October, November and December. Nearly 24 percent of all collisions with deer reported from 2018 to 2022 occurred in these last three months of the year, with 48 percent of them happening in October and December.

MassDOT data shows that 25% of all reported collisions from 2018 – 2022 occurred in November; 48% occurred between October and December.

Fall is breeding season for both moose and white-tailed deer and motorists should be aware of the increase in movement of these animals. Early mornings and evening hours are the most common times to come across one.

Moose breed in September and October while deer breed from October to early December. A moose on the road can be extremely dangerous. They are hard to see and their eyes don’t reflect light due to their height compared to a vehicle’s headlights. Areas with high moose crossings are typically marked with road signs.

If you encounter a moose on the road, you should do your best to brake. Moose will likely not try to get out of the way. If you encounter a deer, do not try to swerve to avoid hitting it as it may result in a more serious accident.

If you do hit one of these animals, you should report it to Environmental Police at 1-800-632-8075. If a deer is killed in the accident, the driver or passengers in the car can salvage the deer, but only after bringing it to a MassWildlife office to be tagged.

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