Syracuse Begins Second Year of Deer Management Program

By author of The Realblog with Stephanie Mallory

Last year’s culling program resulted in the removal of 159 deer and more than 4,000 pounds of donated venison

A deer management program for the city of Syracuse, New York, has just begun its second year with the goal of diminishing the impact of deer overpopulation in the area.

The large numbers of deer have led to an increase in deer-vehicle accidents, have negatively affected parks, gardens, and the ecosystem and have caused public health risks such as Lyme disease.

“The deer population in the City of Syracuse poses serious public safety and health risks,” Mayor Ben Walsh told Localsyr.com. “Through partnership at the local state and federal levels, we implemented a safe and effective program last winter. Continuing this work over multiple years in coordination with other municipalities will be critical to successfully addressing the problem.”

Sites have been identified on the east, west, and south sides of the city that meet the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s criteria.

The culling, which is funded by Onondaga County, will occur at night between dusk and dawn throughout February and March.

When asked if hunters are able to take part in the deer-culling process, Greg Loh, chief policy officer for the city of Syracuse, said the city’s deer management program is only being carried out by trained USDA wildlife managers.

“The city contracts with USDA because of its experience in administering such programs in populated environments,” Loh said.

The 2019-2020 culling program resulted in the removal of 159 deer during the months of December through March, and more than 4,000 pounds of venison were donated, equal to almost 16,250 meals.

For more information about the program click here, or call the Syracuse Parks Department at 315-473-4330.

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