Cathlamet, Washington’s wildlife refuge is facing imminent danger. According to KCPQ-TV, a nearby dike has been heavily eroded and threatens to flood the area with water from the Columbia River.

“If it gives way, this whole area would be under six feet of water,” says Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Officer Jackie Ferrier.

That is hardly hospitable habitat for whitetail. In an effort to save the 50 deer still living in the refuge, the Department has opted for a drastic option: trapping all the deer and taking them to another refuge. Wildlife officers are using nets but progress seems to be slow.

“Basically the nets are baited with apples and pears and the nets are held in suspension by electro magnets,” said Ferrier.

The deer must be removed before April when the flood season sets in. High water levels could overcome the dike and flood the refuge. Unfortunately, there are no funds to repair the dike before that time.

So far 14 deer have been captured by wildlife officers.

Image from Emery Way on the flickr Creative Commons

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