Not just in the US have deer become an issue– and not just deer
- Recreational hunting inadequate to control deer population, Farmers Journal, Feb 20, 2018
Recreational hunting is inadequate as a deer conservation measure and as a method to control the serious economic damage to grassland, crops and woodlands by wild deer. A professional cull is periodically necessary to reduce densities to tolerable levels in districts where numbers and deer damage warrant this. Recreational hunting may then maintain numbers at sustainable levels, according to the MKDMP [Ireland].
- ‘People think the deer are lovely. Then they learn more about it’: the deer cull dilemma, The Guardian, Feb 20, 2018
It is in the Highlands where the country’s deer problem can be seen clearly: they gorge themselves upon gardens and crops and vegetable patches, they run blindly into the road as speeding cars approach. The true scale of the problem is hard to gauge, but our best guess is that there might now be as many as 1.5m deer in the UK, at least half of them in Scotland; more than at any time since the last ice age.
And with the deer comes plague of another sort: cases of Lyme disease, spread by ticks that use the deer as hosts, have rocketed – in some areas reaching epidemic proportions. But perhaps the most pressing concerns are environmental ones. The red deer eat and eat, overwhelming a delicate moorland ecosystem, trampling the ground, shearing the hillside of vegetation and stripping the bark from the trees.
- BC fruit growers calling for deer cull, Global News, FEb 7, 2018
The BC Fruit Growers Association says it’s time governments begin talking about the possibility of a deer cull because the deer are destroying their orchards. The president of the BC Fruit Growers Association (BCFGA) says something has to be done about the out-of-control deer population and that’s why some members are calling for a cull. “And seeing that nothing was done for years, something has to be done now that is much more drastic and that is unfortunate.” Steele says a cull is the only solution because other means of dealing with the problem, including relocation, simply haven’t worked.
- Calls to end deer culling in Richmond Park as season begins, GetSurrey, Feb 5, 2018
A spokesman for the Royal Parks said: “As a member of the British Deer Society, the Royal Parks takes deer welfare very seriously and all aspects of their health are regularly monitored. In addition, both the society and the Deer Initiative of England and Wales fully endorse humane culling. Deer populations are actively managed to keep herds at a sustainable size. Without population control, food would become scarce and more animals would ultimately suffer.”
- The Deer, Safari Anacosti, no date
The population of White-tailed deer on Anticosti Island is the result of an unprecedented biological experiment that took place in 1895. Mr. Henri Menier, a gentleman from France, released 220 White-tailed deer on the island that had been captured live from mainland Quebec. The deer thrived and from this original count the herd now numbers over 125,000 head. The deer have also had a detrimental effect on the indigenous balsam fir trees and other plant life originally found on the island. Primarily used as a winter food source, balsam fir management measures have been undertaken by the Quebec government to help maintain and increase this evergreen’s presence on the island.The deer have also had a detrimental effect on the indigenous balsam fir trees and other plant life originally found on the island. Primarily used as a winter food source, balsam fir management measures have been undertaken by the Quebec government to help maintain and increase this evergreen’s presence on the island.
- Mystery deepens over mass die-off of antelopes, BBC, Jan 17, 2018
More than 200,000 saiga antelopes collapsed and died suddenly in 2015, wiping out most of the global population. The deaths were found to be caused by a bacterial infection. However, new data shows other factors were involved too, including unusually high humidity and temperatures.
- Deer cull at Point Pelee will close national park for two weeks, Windsor Star, Jan 5, 2018
Parks Canada and the Caldwell First Nation are holding a deer cull to reduce the herd of white-tailed deer that Parks Canada calls a “serious threat” to the Carolinian forest and the Lake Erie Sandspit Savannah ecosystems. The park is expected to be closed Jan. 12 to Jan. 26.
- Councillors concerned about ‘enormous’ problem of feral deer, PortNews, Dec 25, 2017
“The population figures east of the highway total some 2000 to 5000 and the same west of the highway,” he said. “To ensures numbers stay constant we would need to cull some 2500 deer per year. Cr Turner said the feral deer population threatens biodersity, koala food trees and koala habitat, market gardens and household gardens.
- Isle of Wight Deer – a Position Statement from the British Deer Society, October 2017
The British Deer Society understands that the Isle of Wight Biodiversity Group wishes to designate the Island as a ‘deer-free zone’.
- London’s Royal Parks accused of ‘callous slaughter’ by animal rights activists after culling more than 10,000 animals including 2,657 rabbits and 1,221 crows, Daily Mail, Oct 7, 2017
The Royal Parks insists ‘humane’ culling is essential to maintaining ecological diversity in its open spaces. A spokesman said: ‘The Royal Parks are carefully managed spaces and complex environments inhabited by thousands of species of animals and plants. It’s a very careful balancing act to make sure that the wildlife can co-exist and flourish in the parks’ delicate ecosystems. Without effective management some species across the 5,000 acres of parkland could fail to thrive or disappear altogether. Our humane approach to animal management also ensures the survival of ancient trees and other rare habitats – which in turn support a rich variety of other animals.’
- Fruit growers feel ‘helpless’ against marauding deer, Oliver Chronicle, Sept 27, 2017
At any one time, several deer help themselves to ripening fruit, taking a bite out of a peach and moving on to the next one. But the real damage comes when they eat the leaves off young trees, stunting their growth.
- Gore Bay residents upset with steadily increasing deer population in town, Manitoulin Expositor, Sept 8, 2017
“The biggest problem is that seeing ticks on my pets, or with the grandkids visiting, with deer droppings all over the yard,” said Ms. Flanagan. She said fencing off of plants and flowers for instance doesn’t work as the deer just rip them down to get at what is inside. “There needs to be some type of controlled cull take place in Gore Bay,” stated Drew Purvis. He pointed out, “our yard is ruined, and you certainly can’t have young kids playing in yards in town with all the deer crap around. We normally have an Easter Egg hunt in our yard, but we couldn’t this year.
- Urbane deer may signal evolving intellect, Chronical Herald, Sept 4, 2017
Does urbanization offer hints to the deer’s evolving intelligence? They’ve taken up residence where they are safe from hunters and certain to find the protection of soft-hearted innocents who can summon a tear at the mere mention of Bambi.
- Victoria must address deer danger: expert, 9news.com.au, Aug 30, 2017
The Victorian government should urgently come up with a well-funded, strategic control and containment plan before the feral deer destroy “vulnerable native ecosystems, farms and people’s safety”, Mr Ingamells said.
- Tasmania’s World Heritage Area damage could be stemmed with recreational deer hunting, inquiry finds, ABCNews, Australia, July 7, 2017
Committee chairman and Huon MLC Robert Armstrong said hunting in conservation areas might be contentious but was supported by environmental groups. “Conservation groups certainly want the deer out of World Heritage Areas,” Mr Armstrong said.
- Wolves and brown bears could return to British countryside to ‘naturally cut deer population’, The Telegraph, June 30, 2017
Experts believe that introducing wolves back into the countryside could help control the burgeoning deer population which now stands at around 1.5 million animals, the highest it has been for 1,000 years. Deer have no natural predators, and cause destruction to woodland habitat which provides food and shelter for native species. They also are responsible for around 50,000 traffic accidents and the death of 20 people each year.
- Land owners face hefty fines if they fail to meet deer cull targets, The Herald, June 29, 2017
LAND owners face fines of up to £40,000 if they fail to hit annual cull targets in a new crackdown on poor estate management that has seen deer numbers soar to its highest level in 1,000 years. It has sparked calamity for motorists with around 6,000 collisions taking place with deer every year in Scotland – an increase of 10 per cent in the last decade. Now a tougher approach is to be taken in dealing with landowners who are failing to manage deer herds properly as part of a new habitat protection plan.
- South Africa’s Robben Island to cull 400 deer, BBC, June 22, 2017
South Africa’s Robben Island will cull 400 fallow deer which have overrun the island, officials have told the BBC. “We treasure all of the island’s natural resources and protecting them is our greatest priority. We look forward to them thriving once more.”
Fallow deer, a declared pest, culled after causing destruction on Fleurieu Peninsula, The Times, June 15, 2017
“As a result of this helicopter operation, which was achieved in just under nine hours, we’ve substantially reduced the core population and with it, the breeding potential for 2017.” The helicopter shoot is one component of the deer control program on the Fleurieu Peninsula. Authorised ground shooting is also conducted in Second Valley Forest Reserve and on private properties year-round. Dr Harper said pest animals were the cause of both economic and environmental damage and she underlined the responsibilities of both private landowners and public land managers to control pest animals such as feral deer on their land.
- Japanese women are entering the male-dominated world of hunting — at the government’s request, Businesss Insider, May 23, 2017
Since the late 1990s, the deer population in Japan has shot up over 650%, from less than 400,000 to more than three million. Japanese women are entering the male-dominated world of hunting — at the government’s request Reuters reports that local Japanese governments are recruiting women through social media to enter the male-dominated world of hunting.
- Urban beasts: how wild animals have moved into cities, The Guardian, May 20, 2017
All around the world, city life seems to be increasingly conducive to wildlife. Urban nature is no longer unglamorous feral pigeons or urban foxes. Wolves have taken up residence in parts of suburban Germany as densely populated as Cambridge or Newcastle. The highest density of peregrine falcons anywhere in the world is New York; the second highest is London, and these spectacular birds of prey now breed in almost every major British city. And all kinds of wild deer are rampaging through London, while also taking up residence everywhere from Nara in Japan to the Twin Cities of the US.
Are cities the new nature reserves? This isn’t as tenuous a question as it sounds. Some animals may be safer among urban populations, which are more sentimental about animals and more squeamish about killing them.
- Plans for habitat and wildlife conservation need to consider the risk of Lyme disease, University of Glasgow, May 9, 2017
Lead author Dr Caroline Millins, from the University of Glasgow’s School of Veterinary Medicine and Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine (BAHCM), said: “We identified several widespread conservation management practices which could affect Lyme disease risk: the management of deer populations, woodland regeneration, urban greening and control of invasive species.
- Plans for habitat and wildlife conservation need to consider the risk of Lyme disease, Phys.org, May 7, 2017
“We found that some management activities could lead to an increased risk of Lyme disease by increasing the habitat available for wildlife hosts and the tick vector. These activities were woodland regeneration and biodiversity policies which increase the amount of forest bordering open areas as well as urban greening. “However, if deer populations are managed alongside woodland regeneration projects, this can reduce tick populations and the risk of Lyme disease.”
Deer are often key to maintaining tick populations, but do not become infected with the bacteria.
- Wild deer are behind rise in Lyme disease, doctors warn, The Times, May 1, 2017
Rising numbers of wild deer could be behind a tenfold increase in Lyme disease, which is transmitted to humans by tick bites and can cause paralysis, meningitis and heart failure.
- Soaring deer numbers are behind growing problem of Lyme disease, warn experts, Telegraph, April 29, 2017
Britain’s soaring deer population is fuelling the growing problem of Lyme disease, scientists have warned. The disease is transmitted through ticks which feed on deer, and then can be picked up by dogs and their owners when they walk through woodland.
- Environmental charities back action to control deer numbers, The Press and Journal, April 29, 2017
Scottish Environment Link, RSPB Scotland, National Trust for Scotland, Ramblers Scotland, Scottish Wildlife Trust, Trees for Life, Woodland Trust Scotland and John Muir Trust have all signed up for increased control. The group has called for the Scottish Government to move forward towards a modernised system they say will help deliver national targets on bio-diversity, climate change and woodland expansion. They have backed the Environment Climate Change and Land Reform (ECCLR) committee report, which criticizes the failure of the current system to protect important habitats because too many deer are damaging native woodland.
- Effects of conservation management of landscapes and vertebrate communities on Lyme borreliosis risk in the United Kingdom, Transactions of the Royal Society, April 24, 2017
- Deer can feed large numbers of adult female ticks, which then lay eggs and produce the next generation of immature ticks, and deer are thus termed ‘tick reproduction hosts’ . A great many studies have shown that deer can be instrumental in maintaining tick populations, such that areas with more deer also have more ticks [12,19,40–51] although there is some uncertainty in the precise relationship between deer density and tick density . Some of these studies specifically tested the impact of deer management methods and, when deer numbers were reduced through culling or fencing, there were dramatic declines in the tick population.
- Norway plans to exterminate a large reindeer herd to stop a fatal infectious brain disease, Science, April 3, 2017
Last week, Norway’s minister of agriculture and food gave the green light for hunters to kill off the entire herd in which three infected individuals were found, about 2000 reindeer, or nearly 6% of the country’s wild population. “We have to take action now,” says Karen Johanne Baalsrud, director of plant and animal health at the Norwegian Food Safety Authority in Oslo. The deer’s habitat will be quarantined for at least 5 years to prevent reinfection. The odds of a successful eradication, experts say, will depend largely on how long CWD has been present in Norway.
- Lynx revolt: Battle over bid to let big cats loose in a forest idyll to help control the local deer population divides a rural community, Daily Mail, Feb 3, 2017
The move to bring the Eurasian lynx into Kielder Forest, Northumberland, is designed to reinvigorate the habitat and help control the deer population. But the idea has divided locals, with farmers worried the six animals, due to be imported from Sweden, will kill sheep. The wild cats, which need to eat around 4.5lb of meat a day, were last seen across Britain in 700AD.
- Deer damaging parks on west side of Windsor, CBC News, Feb 1, 2017
A naturalist with the City of Windsor says deer are damaging parks, and the city is contemplating how to handle the problem. Karen Cedar says the city is still gathering information to determine how many deer can be sustained in the natural areas on the west side of Windsor.
- Ontario First Nation helping in deer cull, part of plan to help species at risk, Western Star, Jan 13, 2017
On Friday, part of the restoration continues when about 20 band members along with Parks Canada staff will fan out across the point and start to cull a herd of white-tailed deer that has been eating its way through the rare forest and savannah. This is the third iteration of the program, according to Lindsay Rodger, the park’s resource conservation manager. Preparatory work began in mid-December when a team went up in a small helicopter to count the deer. They found 84. When they started the program in 2015, there were 192 deer in the park, Rodger says. In 2010, before they began a moratorium on deer culling, there were about 60 deer [found], Rodger says.
- Deer cull to begin in southwestern Ontario national park on Friday, Toronto Metro, Jan 11, 2017
Parks Canada says it will begin a deer cull on Friday in an overpopulated national park in southwestern Ontario. The federal agency says “population reduction” is part of a multi-year plan to restore the ecosystems in Point Pelee National Park.
- Point Pelee National Park closing to hold deer cull, Windsor Star, Jan 12, 2017
The white-tailed deer, which no longer have natural predators in the park, are considered a serious threat to forest and savannah ecosystems at the park. The munching deer are jeopardizing park plans to restore the Lake Erie Sandspit Savannah, a globally rare ecosystem that supports 25 per cent of the species at risk in the park, a Parks Canada release said Tuesday.
- 3 Interior B.C. communities get provincial funding for urban deer culls, CBCNews, Dec 11, 2016
“We always need permission from the province [to cull or relocate deer],” Taft said. “We always felt that the province should be at the table as the funders, that they should be helping to fund these solutions.” The city has also experimented with relocation programs, tagging and moving 13 deer out of the city in 2016.
Taft says the results were mixed. The deer took to the relocation better than expected, but several have already ended up back in town.
- Birth control plan for Oak Bay deer hits snag, CBCnews, Dec 9, 2016
Last month, Oak Bay Council asked for $20,000 from the province. Communities elsewhere in the province have received provincial funding for deer culls.
- Deer population causing mayhem in Magrath, Lethebridge Herald, Dec 5, 2016
Magrath council expressed frustration over an apparent lack of response by the provincial environment minister over the issue of a large white-tail deer population that has plagued the area for decades.
- Tasmania’s wild deer: Aerial culling not the best solution, former Greens leader Bob Brown says, ABC News, Nov 29, 2016
“Instead of proceeding with the recreational deer shooting and crop protection as it is, [we want] the Government to organise a statewide reduction,” she said.
- Domino’s is training reindeer to deliver pizzas in Japan, MLive, Nov 28, 2016
Domino’s employees can be seen putting pizza boxes on the reindeer and showing off the inner-workings of the GPS devices attached to the animal’s backs. Employees can then track the reindeer’s whereabouts with a smart phone.
- Buck chasing doe causes chain-reaction crash on Pat Bay Highway, Vancouver Island News, Oct 26, 2016
According to witnesses, a car crash was triggered by a buck chasing a doe into traffic in Saanich Wednesday – just two days after an aggressive deer attacked a woman and her dog on the South Island. The chain-reaction crash occurred on the Pat Bay Highway near McKenzie Avenue in the afternoon, sending people in two vehicles to hospital with minor injuries.
- As deer control fails, time to call in professionals, Weekly Times, Sept 15 2016
Australia: THE Government’s outsourcing of deer control to recreational hunters has failed. It’s time to try a new approach.
There’s been little scientific research into deer in Australia, but it’s accepted that populations are growing fast and spreading into new areas. Last year students at Mullum Primary in suburban Ringwood were terrorised by a 200kg deer, which was eventually shot dead.
- Prince Charles Crashes Into Deer at Royal Family’s Holiday Estate in Scotland, ENews, Sept 15, 2016
The famous royal was driving his car, an Audi, through the Queen Elizabeth II’s Balmoral Estate over the weekend when he collided with a deer. While the state of the deer is still unknown, reports indicate the prince was left shaken but thankfully unharmed following the collision.
- Mass cull of 3,000 deer in Dutch dunes can go ahead, court rules, Dutch News, Aug 30, 2016
Noord-Holland province has come up with well-supported arguments in favour of the cull and there is no alternative way of reducing the deer population significantly, the court said on Tuesday. The province wants to reduce the deer population from 3,800 to around 1,000 over a five-year period. The province says the large deer population is damaging the dune biodiversity and that the animals cause accidents. Last year there were 61 collisions between deer and cars.
- Lynx could return to UK forests after 1,300 years under plans to ‘rewild’ the countryside to control the deer population, Daily Mail, July 25, 2016
As part of the trial, around 5 to 10 wild lynx will be released for a five year period. The wild cats need to eat around 2kg of meat a day to survive, and are expected to kill wild deer to eat. The reintroduced lynx are expected to kill around 998 [deer] over the five year period.
- Graubünden increases deer cull this autumn, The Local, July 7, 2016
Hunters in the canton of Graubünden will be granted permission to kill more deer than ever this autumn in an attempt by the authorities to control the deer population in the area.
- Deer hunting in Kenting urged, Taipai Times, July 2, 2016
The Formosan sika deer was listed as critically endangered in 1974, but after a restoration program there are now about 2,000 on the Hengchun Peninsula. After 30 years of conservation work, the population of wild Formosan sika deer in the park has reached about 2,000. The government has been urged to consider allowing the hunting of Formosan sika deer in Kenting National Park, because the project to reintroduce the deer to the area has proven so successful that they are beginning to cause damage to the park’s ecology and nearby agriculture.
- Chinese drones to count Japanese deer, Nikkei, June 25, 2016
The project aims to acquire an accurate estimate of the number of sika deer. Data obtained will be used by the hunting association, Dainihon Ryoyukai, to help control the population of the animal, as the deer cause serious damage to crops across the nation.
- Trust deer culling plans for 2016, John Muir Trust (Scotland), June 28, 2016
The Trust is committed to transparency about its deer management plans across its properties as it strives to protect our natural heritage and regenerate native woodlands and has today released a table of its proposed culls across the land it manages in the coming year.
- Meat of the Matter: Humans vs. habitat, Drovers, May 23, 2016
Over the long term, Nature does a reliable job of maintaining eco-librium — only in harsh and brutal fashion. When a population of animals exceeds the carrying capacity of its habitat, disease and starvation soon reduce their numbers in ways arguably far more painful than hiring trained hunters. Either way, the balancing act of maintaining manageable populations of wildlife, while urban development continues its relentless expansion, is a challenge that’s not going anyway anytime soon. The only question mark is whether man or Nature will do the killing.
- Truro couple wants their property divested of problem deer, Truro Daily News, May 18, 2016
“These are tame and have no fear, leaving us to wonder what they will do next,” she said. “This winter my five-year-old granddaughter was trying to build a snowman when a deer came and took the carrot out of her hand.”
- Deer driven to autobahn’s next exit in ‘weapon-free eviction’, DW, May 11, 2016
A team of 12 “hunters” and 25 road maintenance employees were deployed by the Ministry of Transport in the northern German state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania to drive out the deer. The original plan to cull the animals was canceled following resistance from the state’s enviornment ministry.
- Ticks carrying Lyme disease spreading in Eastern Ontario Sun, April 27, 2016
Of the 40 or so tick species in Canada, the ones that worry most people, are called deer ticks. These transmit Lyme disease when they bite animals and humans. Though named for deer, they may be more common as parasites on mice and other rodents. When Wayne Knee was an undergraduate early in this century, he recalls that the accepted view was that “deer ticks were virtually unheard-of in Canada.” But since then they have spread through this region, and even farther north.
- A contagious brain disease has hit Norway’s reindeer, and scientists are afraid of it spreading, Quartz, April 23, 2016
What’s more baffling is that nobody knows how the disease got there. CWD was thought to be restricted to deer, elk, and moose in the US and South Korea. Though it’s theoretically possible that it jumped from another species in Norway (such as cows) to the reindeer, there are no previous known cases of that happening. The other possibility is that it just arose spontaneously—a protein misfolding into a prion by pure chance.
- Wildlife organisations ‘not opposed’ to culling for deer management, Irish Farmers Journal, April 20, 2016
The Irish Wildlife Trust and Wild Deer Association of Ireland are calling for a ‘proper’ management plan for the country’s deer herd, saying that they would not be opposed to culling as a last resort.
- ‘The deer population has reached unacceptable and intolerable levels’, AgriLand, April 20, 2016
How many more farmers livelihoods are going to be put at stake and motorists safety jeopardised before the political leadership is shown to address what has now become a national problem, but is at its most critical in Wicklow?
- Deadly animal prion disease appears in Europe, Nature, April 18, 2016
A highly contagious and deadly animal brain disorder has been detected in Europe for the first time. Scientists are now warning that the single case found in a wild reindeer might represent an unrecognized, widespread infection. Chronic wasting disease (CWD) was thought to be restricted to deer, elk (Cervus canadensis) and moose (Alces alces) in North America and South Korea, but on 4 April researchers announced that the disease had been discovered in a free-ranging reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus) in Norway. This is both the first time that CWD has been found in Europe and the first time that it has been found in this species in the wild anywhere in the world.
- Deer culling on Illawarra Escarpment to be easier if species changed from game to pest, Illawarra Mercury, April 8, 2016
The Greens have welcomed a push to reclassify deer as a pest species, a move which would make it easier to cull them in numbers around the Illawarra Escarpment. It comes after a new report found deer were the “most important emerging pest animal threat”, and tougher measures were needed against pest animals. The NSW Natural Resources Commission’s report found deer had caused nine fatalities and about 100 collisions with trains in the Illawarra. The commission recommended deer be declared a pest species.
- The first detection of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in Europe, CWD-Info.org, April 5, 2015
The Norwegian Veterinary Institute has diagnosed Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in a free-ranging reindeer from the Nordfjella population in South-Norway. The disease is well known in North America; however this is the first detection of CWD in Europe.
The sick female reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus) was detected in the middle of March 2016 in connection with capture for GPS-collaring using helicopter performed by the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA. It died and the carcass was submitted to the Norwegian Veterinary Institute in Oslo for necropsy and laboratory examinations. It was an adult animal, says wildlife pathologist Turid Vikøren at Norwegian Veterinary Institute, who performed the necropsy.
- The return of the lynx, BBC News, March 28, 2016
O’Donoghue, though, thinks the threat to British sheep is minimal. He describes the lynx as a “deer specialist” – it can be used to control excessive numbers of roe and muntjac deer – and a “forest ambush predator”.
- Deer incident at St. Brieux School Wednesday, “At about 5 o’clock last night (Wednesday, March 2) a teacher had heard the commotion, she went down thinking that something had happened because of the construction that is on site. She heard a loud smash and crash. Went down and looked in the classroom and saw the deer,” Garinger said.
- Nara to allow some deer to be culled under new management policy,The Japan Times, March 3, 2016
On Tuesday, the Nara Prefectural Government put an end to years of controversy over the issue, with a panel of experts concluding that it will redefine areas where deer must be protected. Capturing and culling of deer in other areas of the city will be permitted for the first time, though the prefectural government must submit a detailed plan in advance to the Cultural Affairs Agency, according to a Nara government official.
- No one bats an eyelid at the eradication of the rat. But badger ‘control’ provokes howls of outrage. What’s behind our attitude to animals?, The Herald, Feb 15, 2016
No one is batting an eyelid at the death of the rats. And why should they? As well as posing a major threat to rare and beautiful seabirds, rats spread disease, cause damage and have nasty naked tails that send a shiver up the spine.
The contradictions over animals and the degree of protection they are afforded by man, extend to many other species. This week, for instance, an animal rights group suggested that instead of culling deer in Britain’s Royal Parks the females should be darted with a contraceptive. Lesley Dove, from the Stop the Deer Cull group, claimed the annual cull – which sees around 300 year a year taken from two parks in Richmond – was ‘cruel and caused a huge amount of stress to the surviving animals’. Yet deer stalking is carried out all over the country and the resulting venison is snapped up by chefs and butchers, while foresters and farmers supporting culling for the good of the herd and the countryside. Deer may have a very different reputation from the rat – and are far prettier – but few people balk at experts with high-powered rifles keeping numbers in check.
- Serological evidence of tick-borne encephalitis virus infection in moose and deer in Finland: sentinels for virus circulation, Biomed Central, Jan 29, 2016
The incidence of tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) in humans has increased in Finland, and the disease has emerged in new foci.
Nine (0.74 %) of 1213 moose and one (0.74 %) of 135 white-tailed deer were found seropositive for TBEV. A close geographical congruence between seropositive cervids and recently reported human TBE cases was observed: nine of the ten seropositive animals were from known endemic areas.
- Deer Culling, Attadale, Wester Ross
Today the culling of deer is based much more on the welfare of the deer herd and their impact on the surrounding habitat. A collaborative approach to their management has been developed with the formation of ‘Deer Management Groups’ (DMG’s). These originated in the Highlands but are now found all over Scotland. These groups, which are voluntary bodies, tend to cover areas where there are distinctive herds and can range from a few to a large number of separate land holdings.
- Ticks that carry Lyme disease live in almost half of US counties – study, The Guardian, Jan 18, 2016
Ticks that can carry the debilitating illness Lyme disease have significantly spread across the US over the past 20 years and are now found in nearly half of all American counties, including areas where they have never previously been documented, a new analysis has found.
- Tuscan wine makers back cull of 250,000 wild boar and deer, Telegraph, Jan 18, 2016
The makers of Chianti Classico are complaining that their vineyards are under nightly assault from the animals, particularly wild boar. Tuscany’s regional government wants to allow the culling of 250,000 wild boar, roe deer and fallow deer over the next three years in order to reduce the pressure on the agriculture sector.
- Point Pelee National Park in Leamington – temporarily closed, Birding News, Jan 16, 2016
The reason for the closure is that Parks Canada and Caldwell First Nation will be conducting a deer population reduction in the park for a second year as part of a multi-year plan to restore ecosystems at Point Pelee National Park. Hyperabundant deer are a serious threat to forest and savannah ecosystems at Point Pelee National Park. Through over-browsing, the deer in the park are threatening the health of the Carolinian Forest which is home to many Species at Risk such as Dwarf Hackberry and Red Mulberry trees. Heavy browsing by deer is also jeopardizing park efforts to restore the Lake Erie Sandspit Savannah, a globally rare ecosystem that supports 25% of the Species at Risk in the park.
- Fujitsu wants to fix Japan’s deer problem with software, Engadget, Jan 18, 2016
Fujitsu is teaming up with a Japanese forest research institute to learn how animal populations grow. The pair will look into Sika deer, a creature that’s causing plenty of environmental damage due to overgrazing. Traditionally, these sorts of studies require a manual survey and plenty of theoretical calculations, but Fujitsu is hoping to build software that is significantly more accurate. The eventual plan is that this project can help conservationists prepare effective defenses to ensure the deer don’t cause permanent harm.
- Could wild lynxes be the answer to Plymouth’s deer population problem?, The Herald, Jan 14, 2016
The benefits of reintroducing wild lynx to Britain is to be discussed at a lecture in Plymouth on Friday. Experts believe the lynx, which died out in the UK 1,500 years ago, could be a great way to control the deer population. They say the lynx still roams parts of Europe and there are no records of them ever attacking people.
- Fresh clash in Highland deer cull row, The Press and Journal, Jan 14, 2016
the JMT said thousands of deer die a painful death of starvation every year on hillsides because of overpopulation – and that the gamekeepers were trying to “deflect attention” from scrutiny as Scotland ponders greater land reform.
- Oh deer: a tricky conservation problem for Tasmania, The Conversation, Jan 6, 2016
Deer were introduced into Australia in the 19th century for hunting. There are now six species roaming wild, and their numbers are increasing dramatically as their population expands and through human action. As they spread, they raise uncomfortable issues for conservation.
From a current population estimated at 25,000, modelling suggests deer could increase by 40% in the next decade. That would mean up to a million animals by mid century without additional management.
- Warnings over growing danger of deer on Hampshire roads, Hampshire Chronicle, Oct 22, 2015
“Between 40,000 and 75,000 deer are killed on the roads every year, according to the AA, and the size of the animals means these accidents can result in serious injuries to car users, as well as creating extensive damage to vehicles.
- Brian Hutchinson: After cull enrages ‘Save Bambi’ crowd, B.C. creates $100k/year ‘advisory committee’ on urban deer, National Post, Sept 28, 2015
Oak Bay residents are conflicted about their urban deer, which number in the dozens — if not hundreds — and get into all kinds of trouble. Garden pilferage, traffic accidents, sometimes pet homicide. The cleanest, most sensible solution is to shoot problem deer, and whenever possible to butcher the carcasses and give the meat to community groups, First Nations and whomever else might have a taste for venison.
- Wilsons Promontory National Park to close for three days in August, as hunters target feral deer, Age.com Victoria, July 31, 2015 (Australia)
The Wilsons Promontory shooting program brings to five the number of national parks or reserves across Victoria where Parks Victoria has introduced a deer culling program over the last 12-18 months. The Alpine National Park and the Dandenong Ranges National Park are two of the parks where shooting programs have been launched. In the Alpine National Park, deer are damaging vulnerable spaghnum bogs at the head of waterways.
- Farmed deer could be future of cull: Victoria councillor Chris Coleman, CBC News, March 11, 2015
The idea comes from one of Victoria’s sister cities, Napier, New Zealand, which experienced a boom in urban deer fifty years ago. “They captured the deer and put them in a paddock or a field and surprise, surprise, they bred. They realized there was an opportunity,” he said, saying New Zealand now exports hundreds of millions of dollars worth of venison each year.
- Lynx could roam our woods again: Experts want wild cat reintroduced after 1,300 years to help control the deer population, Daily Mail, March 8, 2015
Experts want to release lynx, which prey mainly on deer, into woodland in Norfolk, Cumbria and Aberdeenshire as part of an ambitious ‘rewilding’ scheme. Although the animals would be introduced onto privately owned estates, the woodland would be unfenced, meaning the 70lb animals could roam free around the countryside. Scientists argue that introducing lynx will benefit the ecosystem, by helping control the 1million UK deer population, as well as boosting the tourist economy. But the move is controversial and likely to be opposed by farmers worried about the animals savaging their livestock and game birds.
- Deer scares Princeton family, stomps on pet dogs, CBC News British Columbia, Feb 26, 2015
When Christie let her dogs out just after dusk on Tuesday, she saw a deer had jumped the fence into the yard on the family’s Princeton, B.C., property. The family’s small shih tzu mix chased the deer. Instead of running away, the animal starting stomping on the dog, McIvor said. “It was on its back legs. Its hooves were in the air and it was pounding the little dog,” she said. McIvor says the deer then attacked the family’s pit bull terrier, and when Christie tried to rescue the shih tzu, the deer charged at her.
- Oh deer, oh deer. Proposed cull of 10 Deer at Leighton MossRSPB Liverpool, Feb 5, 2015
The decision to control deer has not been taken lightly and we are not alone in having to do this. Deer control is a legal and widely undertaken part of countryside management in Lancashire, Cumbria and elsewhere in the UK. We have a legal responsibility to maintain and improve the condition of the nationally important wildlife habitats at Leighton Moss, and the deer control will be carried out as part of a wider landscape scale deer management programme in the area.
- Deer Scat Statue Poo-Poos City’s Work to Thin Urban Deer Population, Breitbart News, Feb 7, 2015
City officials say someone last month left a statue of a deer decorated in deer scat on the steps of City Hall, as an expression of displeasure with the growing population of city’s four-legged interlopers, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported Wednesday.
- St. Andrews considers hunt to control deer population, CBCNews, New Brunswick, Jan 29, 2015
Kingsbrae Garden plagued by hungry deer. “Last year, last winter, we suffered over $150,000 in damage alone. For a horticultural garden to lose those valuable plants and 100-year-old hedges, it’s quite devastating to us.”
Despite fencing the entire property and other measures, Henderson said, it’s not uncommon to see more than 20 deer inside the garden.
- 100 deer to be culled at Point Pelee National Park, CBCNews, Jan 8, 2015
One hundred deer need to be eliminated from Point Pelee National Park, in Leamington, Ont., so a deer cull will begin Jan. 12 in effort to trim the park’s deer population. Park superintendent Karen Linauskas estimates there are 130 deer in the park. She says the park can sustain a maximum of 32 deer. Linauskas said the park has about four or five square kilometres of appropriate vegetation for deer and, ideally, there would be between six and eight deer per square kilometre.
- Deer cull – Royal Parks advice, Friends of Richmond Park, Oct 30, 2014
If animals were not removed, food would become scarce and more animals would ultimately suffer. Without population control there would be other welfare issues such as low body fat, malnutrition and high incidence of death from exposure to cold in winter. Attempting to maintain too many deer within a restricted park area would soon lead to a build-up of parasites and other pathogens causing disease in the deer.
- Hunters invited to Montreal’s Heron Island to control deer population, CBC News, Montreal, Oct 18. 2014
Quebec says deer are damaging ecosystem on small island facing Verdun and Lasalle. Ten years ago one male and two female deer arrived on Heron Island. The most recent survey shows there are 46 living here now.
- Major wild deer cull ‘urgently needed’ to combat TB – IFA, Cases of bovine TB rise sharply, Irish News, June 7, 2014
- Professional shooters will cull deer in Yarra Ranges parks to protect endangered wildlife, Leader, Melbourne, March 5, 2014
Friends of the Helmeted Honeyeater Group president Bob Anderson said the culling program was needed to save the highly-endangered animals living in the Yellingbo reserve.
“I think it has to happen if we want to keep the Helmeted Honeyeater birds and Leadbeater’s possum in the reserve,” Mr Anderson said.
“We need to have the natural habitat and they (the deer) destroy it.”
Dr Dan Harley from Zoos Victoria said the Leadbeater’s possum population in the reserve had declined to just 40 and habitat restoration was the key to saving the species at the site.
- Deer to be culled by hunters in parks, including Sherbrooke Forest, Sydney Morning Herald, March 5, 2014
Hunters will be authorised to shoot and kill up to 220 deer at three parks near Melbourne under a culling program to be managed by Parks Victoria.
- Cull one million deer a year to stop them from devastating woodland, wildflowers and crops, say experts, Lebanon News Beirut, March 7, 2013
- Deer: 50% cull ‘necessary to protect countryside’, BBC News, 6 March 2013
In the absence of natural predators deer populations are continuing to expand, threatening biodiversity and causing road traffic accidents and crop damage, say researchers. Dr Paul Dolman, ecologist at the University of East Anglia and lead author, said: “We know deer are eating out the… vegetation of important woodlands, including ancient woodlands. “Deer are implicated as the major cause of unfavourable conditions in terms of woodland structure and regeneration. “There is evidence that deer reduce the number of woodland birds – especially some of our much loved migrant birds species like Blackcap and Nightingale, and resident species like Willow Tit. We have a problem.”
The new research suggested that only by killing 50% to 60% of deer can their numbers be kept under reasonable control.
- Deer cull: why half of Britain’s 1.5 million animals must die, The Week, March 7, 2013
- First in-depth UK deer census highlights need for increased culls, Phys.org, March 7, 2013
Half of the Britains deer population needs to be culled to preserve woodlands and birdlife, said a scientific study published on Thursday.
- Deer cull in parks strongly supported by conservation groups, The Age, Australia, March 6, 2014
Deer were responsible for substantial damage inside Sherbrooke Forest, a part of the Dandenong Ranges National Park renowned for its lyrebird population.
Mr Maisey said deer had trampled and stripped away ground ferns back to bare muddy earth in some places and severely damaged creek banks.
- Roe deer numbers ‘changing woodland ecosystems’, BBC News, Jan 2013
- Deer cull in parks strongly supported by conservation groups, WA Today, March 6, 2014
- One dog killed and others injured as deer attacks on increase – pet owners warned, Evening Standard, June 11, 2012
One dog, believed to be a King Charles spaniel puppy, has been killed, while others have required veterinary treatment and a woman was taken to hospital after being knocked down by a deer.
The buck stops here!, Pitchcare.com, Dec 24, 2017
It has been calculated that, even if twenty-five percent of the population were culled, the current numbers would see no significant fall. Currently, only fifteen percent are culled each year, which is why the estimate for 2024 stands at four million plus. Imagine if nothing were done at all!
France launches ‘tick alert app’ in frantic bid to map Lyme disease explosion as blight ‘moves North’, Telegraph, July 17, 2017
Legislation aimed at protecting natural environment from deer ‘not fit for purpose’, warn MSPs, Hollyrood, April 3, 2-17
2016 urban deer cull and research grants announced, TMTV/BCTV, Dec 9, 2017
Italy’s Famed Wine Region a War Zone, Invaded by Boars and Others, New York Times, March 7, 2016
In February, after years of lamenting, the region approved a law aimed at drastically reducing the number of wild boars and deer over the next three years, bringing the population to around 150,000 from over 400,000 today.