Footage has surfaced of farmers separating two stags fighting in a fence,

Farmers Jim Burrows and Richard Gorman found the deer on Gorman's Awatere Valley property last Sunday.

Burrows said he and Gorman weren't in danger when they freed the animals, explaining the pair "went and got some wire cutters and let them go".

The animals were "just really scared", he told Fairfax Media.

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"They didn't show any aggression to us, they just wanted to get away."

Burrows said they kept an eye on the animals to make sure they "didn't flick an antler at us".

Fighting is common during mating season, which runs from late-March through April.

Burrows said that the fence was "pretty shot" but that the stags were "good as gold" following the release.