Park wardens reassure visitors after stag attack

Bushy Park wardens are working to reassure visitors that it is still safe to use the park after video footage of a man being chased up a tree by a stag went viral on YouTube. <--break->“></p>

<p>The confrontation between the man and the stag occurred when a man seemed to ignore advice from the wardens and walked too close to a pair of rutting deer. One stag reacted territorially to the close encounter and charged, forcing the man to climb a tree to escape. Video footage of the incident has since accumulated thousands of hits <a href=on YouTube.

While this seems to demonstrate that the park may not be safe, Bushy Park officials insist that the deer will not harm visitors if safety instructions are followed. The park launched the public information campaign before the start of the rutting season in September to provide park users with important safety advice on how to use the park safely.

Bushy Park Assistant Manager Bill Swan said: “The Royal Parks has new signs on every gate and around the car parks warning of this and has used local media to warn visitors to the park that it is important to be alert to your surroundings and maintain a minimum distance of 50metres, particularly during the deer mating season.”

He also wished to remind visitors to never get in between or feed the deer and never photograph them at close range.

Local cyclist Mr Mark Chambers travels through the park twice a day on his way to work and admits that he has been unnerved by the presence of the rutting stags in the park. “It is very noticeable that the stags in the park are more aggressive and generally less afraid of people than normal,” he said.

Mr Chambers added: “I have previously looked information up about the deer on the parks website but it is comforting to see that the Park is putting measures into place – such as the signs on the park gates – to ensure that visitors are aware of the dangers and safety precautions they should take when entering the park.”

A spokesperson for Bushy Park added that the safety advice had been well received by the local community and that they hope it will ensure that people continue to enjoy and use the park safely over the coming weeks.

Visitors wishing to walk dogs in the park are advised to check the website for more information.

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