Wednesday, January 31, 2007

DELAWARE NEWS: Fifty Deer Per Square Mile Post-Hunt Still Too Many

State experts say Delaware still has too many deer.

Rob Hossler with the Division of Fish and Wildlife told hunters Sunday that there were an estimated 36,000 deer in Delaware after the recent hunting season. He says the goal is to reduce the population to 40 deer per square mile of deer habitat- or 29,000 statewide.

Hossler says the state could add several days to the hunting season and might allow hunters to bag more deer.


COLORADO NEWS: Deer Hunt in City of Alamosa

The city of Alamosa declared open season Tuesday on town deer, a population that officials say has become both too abundant and aggressive.

The town's first deer hunt - up to 30 licenses, five at a time, to be issued on antlerless animals - will run through February on the front nine of the golf course and on a 1,300-acre ranch held by the town as a wildlife preserve, City Manager Nathan Cherpeski said.

The hunt allows for archery and shotguns, but no rifles (errant bullets would travel too far). The town is handing out maps for hunters and any members of the general public who might want to avoid those areas. And hunters who receive licenses must go to a local instructor to qualify as an accurate archer or shooter.

"Our deer population is causing car accidents and property damage," Cherpeski said. "Two pets have been killed, small dogs - killed in their own yards. The deer stand 20 feet away (from people) and are not afraid. ... Twenty or 30 mill around the high school campus."

The Colorado Division of Wildlife consulted on the managed hunt, which has been under consideration for a few years, but the division is letting the town run it.

"It is within their jurisdiction," DOW spokesman Joe Lewandowski said. "The division will be keeping an eye on it. That number (of licenses) will not significantly check this deer population."

Cherpeski said that if 30 mule deer does are taken, it will only slow the population growth, not stop it. Officials have been unable to do a hard count of the deer because the population is scattered and mobile, but they estimate 500 to 1,000 are in town or on the outskirts.


MINNESOTA NEWS: 2006 Second Highest Harvest On Record

Minnesota hunters harvested nearly 270,000 deer during 2006, the second highest deer harvest ever recorded, according to a final numbers announced today by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

With nearly 500,000 deer hunters enjoying long seasons and liberal bag limits, DNR officials anticipated a strong 2006 deer harvest. In total, firearms hunters harvested 229,000 deer while archery and muzzleloader hunters harvested 25,000 and 13,500 deer, respectively.

Hunters who participated in the early antlerless season tagged 2,300 deer. Overall, the statewide firearm harvest was up 6 percent, archers enjoyed another record season and increased 8 percent, while muzzleloader harvest decreased 4 percent from their record 2005 harvest.

"Once again, Minnesota deer hunters enjoyed another great deer season,"
said Lou Cornicelli, DNR big game program coordinator.

Prior to 2003, Minnesota hunters had never killed 250,000 deer in any one season. Over the four years, total deer harvest exceeded 250,000 each year.