Making deer glow to prevent cars from hitting them

Originally published at: Making deer glow to prevent cars from hitting them | Boing Boing




@vermes82 says (🌈 Unicorn Chasers 🌈 (Part 2) - #276 by vermes82) that this was in 2014 and it looks like it hasn’t been repeated.


Are glowing reindeer antlers the wolf equivalent of seeing the Golden Arches beckoning in the distance?


Impact evaluation of the Porokello alert service:

On the basis of examination of statistics and maps, it can be seen that the number of reindeer
accidents and the reindeer accident rate have decreased since the introduction of Porokello. The
alerts are likely to be one factor in the positive development of safety.


The link to the source material doesn’t work for me, but the photo makes it look like retro reflective paint, not fluorescent paint, and I found another article from 2014 confirming that. Although zany fluorescent painted reindeer would be cool too.


Another promising approach might be to mount a red LED bulb on the reindeer’s nose.

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Are they sure that it’s not Tony Tony Chopper overdoing the Rumble Balls again?


Or perhaps just don’t run roads through areas where reindeer live. Bloody humans, think they own the planet.

Somehow recalls one of the stranger psy-ops strategies during war-time. The American scheme to dump a bunch of glow-in-the-dark foxes on Japan: project Fantasia. Foxes are important Shinto spirits and apparently the U.S. O.S.S. thought having glowing (via radium paint, hence radioactive) foxes run around Japan’s wilderlands would …shatter their resolve somehow?

Initial tests were conducted in New York’s Central Park. The OSS dispatched 30-odd foxes that “were painted with a radiant chemical which glowed in the dark.” The plan had its intended effect. New Yorkers were “horrified” with the sight of the ghostlike foxes seemingly appearing out of nowhere.

In the end the advent of the atomic bomb rendered this far less lethal scheme pointless. (additional reference)


There are very few wolves up there but depending who you ask wolverines kill a lot of reindeers.

I’ve hit just one deer and it’s not because it was standing in the middle of the road. It could have been limned in neon and I still couldn’t have stopped the truck as it leapt in front of me.


It’s more about losing livestock. Reindeer are semi-domesticated.


So they’re safe. . . until molting season.

They are rarely alone.


Looks less florescent, and more reflective. My dad got his hands some of that paint and went around in the county and painted these ubiquitous concrete pillars of these small bridges throughout Osage County gravel roads back when he was the County Weed Man. Er… Noxious weed, not the other kind. Wasn’t part of his job, as much as they were hard to see at night and wanted to see them better.

Was going to say the same thing. Deer strikes are just part of Midwest life. I guess I have only hit one deer, and it was a fawn that just came out of nowhere and smacked into the corner of my bumper. I felt soooo bad. My kid was in the car and I just kept going. I didn’t want her to be mad that I killed Bambi.

When I was a kid we ran into one coming back from pizza night. I remember it was in a flash in front of us. Another time, my dad nailed one with his Mazda GLC, a little compact car from the 70s. He ended up finding it later with and took the rack. Glued the little emblem from his car onto the mount and called it his .357 Mazda.

Pro tip, if you see one, slow down, there almost always more, especially during rutting season when the males are especially stupid.


Trains are even worse. The big ore trains from Kiruna to Narvik can only turn on the windshield vipers if a herd of reindeer are on the track.


OK but what about wolves with wi-fi probably reading this?

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Also a fixture of the Midwest are those stupid anti-deer car whistles people stick on their bumpers. They don’t scare deer away and the deer certainly hear the car long before–they just don’t care.

My close call–a small herd was grazing within a few feet of a very busy interstate outside of KC at dusk. I just caught sight of them but thought I was OK as they all had their heads down. Then they flinched. One took a big leap into the road, almost running into the side of the car in front of me, and was now in my lane. Thankfully, its second leap was to follow the rest of the herd going back down the embankment. Gillette’s got nothing; that was a close shave.

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No use saving them from cars if it attracts wolf, I thought to myself, so I looked it up, Norway and Sweden are WAY bigger than Minnesota, and have a 10th as many wolves. I was surprised by that.

All of my friends who’ve hit a white tail deer said it came out of no where. I don’t think glowing would have prevented any of the accidents.