Experts discuss deer problem at County Center
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Experts discuss deer problem at County Center

FROM Lohud.com
April 30, 2015

Programs to kill and non-lethal alternatives are discussed by presenters and panelists at an event sponsored by the Westchester County Department of Parks.
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(Photo: File photo by Frank Becerra Jr./The Journal News)

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WHITE PLAINS What works in one community to contain the growing deer population might not work in another, experts said Thursday at a county parks-sponsored forum at the Westchester County Center.
The forum was aimed at communities looking to take action against deer, which have thrived in the region due to ample local food sources and little in the way of natural predators such as cougars, bobcats and wolves.
Dave Ryan, police chief of Pound Ridge and one of the speakers, described the town's own bow hunting program now in its ninth year but said it might not be a good fit for other communities.
"No one solution is going to work here," he said. "The one thing we can't do is nothing."
Presenters and panelists discussed various methods to kill the animals, which residents say are a danger to drivers and menace to backyard gardens and the local ecosystem. Also discussed were several programs aimed at putting the brakes on deer population growth by non-lethal means.
Westchester County government allows bow hunting <http://www.lohud.com/story/news/local/new-york/2015/03/03/westchester-rockland-deer-coyotes-clash/24315663/>  at six of its northern parks and regulates those licensed to hunt there and where they can hunt closely. Archers must shoot from removable tree stands to ensure that arrows are always on a downward trajectory. They must also pass proficiency tests.
At issue are the communities in the southern part of the county, below Interstate 287, that are more densely populated and with less green space to hunt the deer <http://www.lohud.com/story/news/local/westchester/2015/02/13/deer-hunt-hitch-southern-westchester/23348601/> .
Laura Simon, field director of the Humane Society's Urban Wildlife Program, said she worked with communities to outline methods to address concerns without kill programs. These include educational programs to reduce risks to drivers and promoting "deer-proof" flowers in yards and the use of repellants.
"The irony here is we've created a landscape that's a virtual buffet and then we get mad at them for coming to the buffet and that's not right," she told The Journal News.

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