DRIVERS across Herefordshire are being warned to be more careful on the roads as deer are on the move because of poaching.

A society which helps to manage deer said that while things such as reflectors and clearing verges to make deer easier to spot have been tried, the only way to reduce accidents involving deer is to reduce the population in those areas.

Hotspots in the county for spotting deer include Dinmore Hill, on the A49 between Hereford and Leominster, and the A438 west of the city towards Bridge Sollars.

One driver who was involved in an accident on the A438 said he's the third person to be involved in such a crash in the past eight months.

Mr Taylor from the Whitecross area of Hereford said: "I'm warning road and traffic users of the A438 of dangers due to deer wandering about the road.

"On May 1st 2019 I was travelling along the stretch of road between Bridge Sollars the Port Way Inn when a deer jumped over the hedge onto the bonnet of my car."

Hereford Deer Management Society (HDMS) said deer are seeming a bigger problem now because they are being displaced by hunting.

Tim Hill from the group said: "They definitely are more widespread around the county but some deer managers are reporting dwindling numbers in what were large herds.

"I believe there are two main reasons for this displacement, firstly poaching will have a effect, this is easier to carry out in remote places so moving deer from these places, secondly trophy shooting is making deer herds problematic and unstable."

Although he said the deer population is increasing, it's the smaller Muntjac deer that cause the most problems and can even injure dogs in fights.

Tim Hill from the group said: "Muntjac deer that can live quite happily in smaller areas of woodland, bramble, even gardens. These secretive little deer are hard to manage as they are quite solitary and can hide away mostly unnoticed until the numbers have increase to a damaging level.

"Unfortunately muntjac don't have a great commercial value due to their size and the work involved in butchery. Male muntjac have very sharp little antlers and large canines, these are used for fighting amongst males but have been known to inflict nasty injuries to dogs.

"Muntjac are no more dangerous to road users than foxes or badger due to their size though they may put a dent in your bumper."

Happy to live in more built-up areas, a Hereford resident was surprised to spot a muntjac in her garden last week.

Cynthia Morrison, who lives on Southbank Road, said it she saw the animal at around 10am on May 30.

"It looked like a small deer," she said.

"I've read that these animals have been seen in the Lugg Meadows. I suppose that isn't too far as the crow flies."