Letters to the Editor and Others

Sent to the Buffalo (NY) News: Feeding Deer

We were saddened after being made aware of the case in which Ms. Anita Depczynski was charged with violating the state conservation law by feeding a herd of tame deer at a suburban Buffalo park.  This case calls attention to the moral schizophrenia that our society suffers from - a condition that we hope can be cured by introspection and education.

Nearly all hunters have justified their violent sport by stating that if they did not kill the deer, the deer would die of starvation before the winter gives way to spring.  Given this fact, it is most ironic that Ms. Depczynski was given a summons for feeding deer, when she did so intending to prevent them from starving through the winter. 

The New York State Bureau of Wildlife promotes hunting programs in which it sets high "bag limits," that is, it allows the killing of the maximum number of deer while ensuring that the herd will rebound with larger populations the following season.  Reality has it that deer hunting creates deer overpopulation and contributes to starvation rates.  When a population of deer is hunted, it leaves more habitat, more food and more breeding opportunity for the deer who were lucky enough not to have been slaughtered.  The birthrate of the surviving deer accelerates and more fawns are born, increasing the deer herd for the next season.  Hunters do not help the situation any, because they target the biggest, strongest bucks with the largest antlers for trophies.  This leaves the sickest and weakest animals to survive and breed, thus weakening the gene pool. 

The Bureau of Wildlife encourages this mismanagement of the deer herd because its annual budget, including the salaries of its most highly paid employees, is paid for through the sale of hunting licenses.  The larger the deer herd is kept, the more licenses can be sold and the more revenue can be raised.  This is the reality of wildlife management as practiced by the Bureau of Wildlife.  It has nothing to do stabilizing hunted animal populations and everything to do with money.

We empathize with the compassion shown by Ms. Depczynski.  We understand that the desire to help animals through acts of kindness is a far better thing for society than the desire to kill animals through acts of extreme violence.  For more information regarding the truth behind the hunting programs pushed by state game agencies, please contact the Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting at (845) 256-1400and visit our website at  

Joe Miele, Vice President
Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting
PO Box 562
New Paltz, NY 12561
(201) 368-8271

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