Friday, March 06, 2009

UTAH NEWS: Another Case of Rising Suburban Deer Populations

Prancing deer in Bountiful are becoming a more common sight, these days.

For some, it reminds them that nature is still close at hand. For others, it means their gardens are eaten up.

“We have had a lot of complaints about the growth of an urban deer herd in Bountiful,” said City Manager Tom Hardy.

He was talking about the city’s critters in relation to approval given by the city council to a five-year contract with Davis County Animal Control Services.

Deer actually fall under jurisdiction of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

“There is no natural predator, only the cold and snow” to deter deer population from growing, Hardy said.

“The population is exploding, and not just on the east bench,” he said. “There is a problem all the way down to the freeway.

“Seven to eight years ago, we had deer hitting cars,” plus the more usual cars hitting deer, he said. “The division thinned the herd, killed several hundred deer.”

The thought of killing deer, obviously, doesn’t come down well with everyone, the city manager said.

“To thin the herd, they (division staff) have to literally go into people’s backyards” and take the deer out.

Source: Clipper Today

KANSAS NEWS: More CWD Cases Show Up

Five more Kansas white-tailed deer have been confirmed positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD), bringing to eight the total number of CWD incidents from the 2008 Kansas deer seasons.

The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks is still awaiting final lab results on about 100 more tissue samples from hunter-killed deer during the past deer season, according to Shane Hesting, KDWP wildlife disease coordinator. Tissue samples were collected from hunters around the state during the past deer season, as KDWP continued annual sampling begun in 1996 to help track the occurrence of CWD in the state’s wild deer. More than 10,000 tissue samples have undergone lab analysis since annual sampling began.

All eight deer confirmed as CWD-positive were taken by hunters in northwest Kansas. Of the five additional CWD-positive deer confirmed by KDWP this week, two came from Sheridan County, two from Rawlins County, and one from Cheyenne County.

The five newly-reported incidents are in addition to three Decatur County CWD-positive deer documented in early January by KDWP.

CWD has been detected previously in Kansas. During the 2007 season, three Decatur County whitetails were confirmed as CWD-positive. The first occurrence in a wild Kansas deer was a white-tailed doe killed by a Kansas hunter in 2005 in Cheyenne County.

For the full story see:

NEW YORK NEWS: Biggest Harvest in Five Years, Harvest Goal Still Missed

Hunters in New York harvested nearly 223,000 deer last year, the state's most bountiful season since 2003, according to numbers released this week by the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

The deer take in Orange, Sullivan and Ulster counties increased by 5 percent. The statewide increase was 2 percent.

Orange County posted an especially fruitful hunting season, according to DEC statistics, which showed Orange had the third highest number of bucks killed per square mile of any county in the state. Local hunters said the ranking is not a coincidence; sportsmen in Sullivan and Ulster were restricted to hunting bucks with a minimum of three points on one antler under a program being tested by the state. The restriction did not cover Orange County.

Despite the final tally — which comes from hunters' reports, DEC check stations and meat processors — local hunters said the season was largely a bust.

"The local sportsmen feel they had a poor season," said Carmen Heitczman, president of the Orange County Federation of Sportsman Clubs. "I don't know what formula the DEC is using, but they ought to change it."

Locals said the deer take among their friends and hunting camps was low, citing bad weather (fog and rain tainted opening weekend) and dwindling open land for hunting. The DEC also said the total fell short of the 5 percent to 10 percent kill increase it had hoped for.

For the full article see: Record Online

Monday, March 02, 2009

AUSTRALIA NEWS: Sport hunting Unlikely to Control Deer

The National Parks Association says deer hunters in the New South Wales Illawarra region need to view the pest as an environmental threat rather than a hunting resource.

The state's third annual deer season, which is open to recreational hunters, started yesterday and runs until the end of October.

The association's executive officer Andrew Cox says recreational hunting is not an effective feral animal control because it is too selective.

Mr Cox says while there is some reduction in deer numbers, hunters need to take stronger action.

"With feral animals acting early and with lots of resources is the way to deal with this," he said.

"I think we can act to stop new populations growing, expanding in areas that weren't covered.

"They certainly are well adapted to many of the coastal wet forests of the east coast of New South Wales."

Source: ABC News (Australia)