County's Deer Management Program Results In Removal Of 90 Deer
Hunter participation was high this year, according to county officials.
Union County's annual Deer Management Program has resulted in the removal of 90 deer by hunters throughout the course of the program, county officials said Thursday.
"Monday was the fifth and final day of the Union County Deer Management Program for 2013," Union County Spokesperson Sebastian D'Elia said. "Hunter participation was high, with 19 of the 23 hunters present for the morning shift and 22 hunters participating in the afternoon."
In the Monday morning shift, D'Elia said three deer were harvested from the Watchung Reservation. In the afternoon, two more deer were culled from the Watchung Reservation.
"No deer were harvested at Lenape Park, though a pedestrian survey conducted by myself and other staff counted at least 24 deer on the other side of the Boulevard in Nomahegan Park," D'Elia said.
According to county officials, the total harvest for the 5-day program is 68 deer from the Watchung Reservation, 21 deer from Lenape Park, and 1 from Passaic River Park.
This program, according to county officials, is intended to reduce the white-tailed deer population to minimize overbrowsing of the forested parkland, reduce browse damage on the landscape plantings of surrounding homes, reduce the incidence of deer-related motor vehicle accidents, and lessen the occurrence of Lyme disease.
More than 35 deer were removed last year as part of the county's Deer Management Porgram.
"Only 10 of the 90 deer harvested were sent to our contracted butcher,' D'Elia added. "The other 80 deer were taken by the hunters for butchering at their expense, resulting in a savings to the county of $5,200"
The Oak Ridge Sportsmen’s Association had their eighth day of hunting last Friday at the Ash Brook Reservation, but no deer were killed during those efforts, D'Elia said.
"Their efforts have not resulted in the harvest of any deer on their last two attempts. To date, the seven members of that hunting club have removed a total of 13 deer, of which 10 have been sent to the County’s butcher for donation to the Community FoodBank," D'Elia said.