As part of the town of DeWitt’s comprehensive Deer Management Program, the town will be conducting deer reduction efforts throughout the community now through the end of March 2019.
“Thanks to careful planning and the cooperation of town staff, community members and organizations, our deer management efforts were very successful in 2018,” said Town of DeWitt Supervisor Ed Michalenko. “With the on-going partnership and awareness of our residents, we expect to continue to stabilize the deer population in 2019, thereby reducing the incidence of Lyme disease, vehicle accidents and damage to vegetation and landscape plantings.”
Deer management is a significant challenge for the Town of DeWitt; while “natural” levels for deer are generally accepted to be approximately 8.5 per square mile, some areas of the Town of DeWitt have approximately 85 deer per square mile, according to town information.
“Thanks to the cooperation of our town residents and property owners, we were able to remove 53 deer from the central area of DeWitt in 2018, and we delivered 1,590 pounds of venison to local food pantries,” said Chris Manchester, who heads the Deer Management Program for the Town of DeWitt. “We want to let residents know the deer cull is on-going now through March of 2019, and we ask them to stay aware and observe a few precautions.”
To ensure the safety of residents, the town requests the partnership of residents in observing these precautions:
1. Remember, Town of DeWitt parks are closed from dusk until dawn.
2. Make sure you have permission from a property owner before entering private property, especially after dark and before dawn, during the winter months — some properties could be a part of the deer management program and thus, unsafe.
3. If you are a property owner interested in participating in the 2020 deer management efforts, or you simply have questions about this year’s management efforts, contact Christine Manchester at email@example.com
“Our deer management program is a great example of how we’re ‘building community’ in DeWitt,” said Manchester. “Residents were the critical impetus in the creation of the program, and they are vital to our continued successful facilitation of the program. We feel fortunate to work with such an informed and committed community.”
For more information, go to Townofdewitt.com/WhiteTailedDeer.aspx.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.