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Deer Hunt Closes South Mountain Reservation

Published on January 26th, 2008 by | Filed Under: Millburn & Short Hills Living, NJ Events, South Orange Living

BambiSouth Mountain Reservation is Closed Between Millburn and West Orange for a Deer Hunt. 

Don’t plan on driving through the South Mountain on Tuesdays and Thursdays from January 29-February 28, 2008. Trained Marksmen Will Be On Site to take care of the “Deer Problem.”

One of my fondest memories growing up in Short Hills was going to the Deer Paddock with my parents just off South Orange Ave between Old Short Hills Road and Brookside Drive. I loved to see “Bambi” and feed he and his brothers and sisters.

Now the deer are everywhere. The Essex County Deer Management Program is “taking care of the situation.”  Needless to say, neighbors in Millburn, Short Hills, Maplewood, South Orange and West Orange are taking strong stands…on both sides.

What do you think?

ABC NEWS did a piece on Sharpshooters Protecting the Short Hills Mall (which is miles away from The Hunt)

Map of South Mountain Reservation

  1. Patricia Adams

    Someone needs to step forward and stop this disgusting murder plot for the deer. Why is this called a reservation if we, as human beings, are going to discriminate on what is to be preserved and what is not?

  2. Arnold Selby

    We all loved Bambi and still do. What we probably did not notice,
    or thought much about, as we walked through South Mountain was the
    abundance and variety of flowers, bushes, the new growth trees,
    various species of birds and other co-residents of the forest.

    Now, Bambi is still there, but all the rest: forest regrowth,
    flora and fauna diversity is greatly diminished and, if nothing is
    done, will be pretty much gone, possibly in our, or our children’s,
    lifetime. The cause is the overpopulation of overabundant deer.

    In our, and many suburban areas, this is not a case of encroachment
    or reduction of habitat by humans, as some misguided folk claim,
    but unbridled, near explosive, growth of the deer. This is clearly
    not the tragedies of the Silverback apes or Siberian tigers whose
    numbers are reducing to near extinction; rather precisely the opposite,
    unfettered growth. This well studied and well documented growth of the
    deer and other ungulates has resulted from factors such as elimination
    of natural predators, the deer’s extraordinary reproductive capacity
    (e.g., fawns born in the spring will be carrying their own fawns by
    fall) and probably global warming (e.g., still green grass in January
    and less food needed to eat to keep warm).

    The result of this overabundance is that the deer have now assumed the
    role of habitat destroyers. They are achieving this role not only in
    South Mountain, but all over NJ, the US, North America and many more
    places on our planet Earth. Even if one questions the preciseness
    of their growth statistics, few would argue they have doubled, if
    not tripled over the past 25-40 years. Even without the statistics,
    who among us, from our own observations, disputes this growth?

    While there will always be a minority, a quite vocal minority,
    who disagree with the need for reduction, the majority advocating
    reduction includes many stewards of our land: the NJ Audubon Society,
    the New Jersey Conservation Foundation, the South Mountain Conservancy and the National Wildlife Research Center (NWRC) of the USDA.
    Of course, there is also the divisive issue of how to achieve this
    reduction. Again, the minority typically allude to non-lethal fictions
    such as deer contraceptives. However, along with all their other proposed
    non-lethal solutions, the accurate, unarguable fact is that there
    is not now and not in the foreseeable future, a contraceptive that
    is effective on free roaming deer herds. Even the NWRC, which is
    spearheading the research of Gonacon wildlife contraceptive states
    in their website FAQ:

    Q. Will GonaCon eliminate the need for hunting to control
    deer overpopulation?
    A. No. Contraception alone cannot reduce
    overabundant deer populations to healthy levels. GonaCon is a tool
    to be used in conjunction with other wildlife management methods.

    So, my answer to the original question, “What do you think?”: I think
    that the planned deer culling which, has a goal of 20 deer per square
    mile is a worthy, much needed endeavor, which will insure that Bambi and her myriad offspring,
    a healthy forest with flora and fauna diversity will be with us,
    our children and generations to come.

  3. Patricia Adams

    God created this earth and his creatures. He did not create man to manage it.

    Let you all think about this before you become too impressed with your own opinions of how you’re going to fix the problem. Evidently, he didn’t feel a need to create more predators for the deer. Maybe we should stop building our roads in the middle of their land.

    Anyone who feels a deer should be killed because it’s eating their precious flowers, should move back to the city and buy a windowbox.

  4. marilynn English

    I think it truly disgusting that we are putting out food for the deer and killing them when they are eating. As if the slaughter of them is not enough, now we are baiting them as well. And we wonder why the youth and gangs of Essex County are killing each other and why guns are everywhere. What are we teaching them? Something is in the way, shoot it. I pay over $10,000 in property taxes. I moved from Jersey City to this area because I want to see deer and want to enjoy wildlife. I too spend a good deal of money on landscaping, but they are things, they can be replaced. Those of you who want to kill every living creature in this State should move back to Brooklyn. I think it is a credit to New Jersey that we can live in harmony with wildlife. And for those of you who mention car accidents being caused by deer. I have had three deer related incidents and have not had a problem. I know when they are out, I have deer whistles and I don’t speed. Reflectors also work. And guess what, you have a better chance of being killed by a gun than by a deer. I also know that mice bring ticks. Are we going to start shooting all the mice in Essex County as well? If you want to keep your rights to enjoy nature and wildlife and all that the reservation has to offer, we must remove from office those who do not listen to facts and who spend our tax dollars incorrectly. I believe four aerial surveys were done on the reservation, which was financed by my tax dollars and yours as well. Why spend the money if deVincenzo is not adhering to those reports? What is the slaughter really about, giving in to the Conservancy at the cost of the residents who want the deer? We must hold deVincenzo accountable for this abuse of power.

  5. judy

    The deer hunting should be stopped immediatley. It is in humane and is hurting the deer. This is an outrage! STOP DEER HUNTING!!

  6. todd rogers

    I’ts about time. there is to many deer there and a hunt would prove to be benificial to the deer herd making them stronger.

  7. Sloan vonSpiessbach

    This baited killing spree is an injustice! The aerial count of the deer was at 190 deer and they plan to kill 140!! The deer were here first and we encroached on them!
    This is a nightmare -the babies watching their mothers and fathers wounded and eventually die and then gutted. They are almost never killed on the first or even third shot.
    I have 2 acres backing up to the reservation and the flowers by my pool get eaten- big deal!! They were here first.
    The immunocontraception does work- check the case studies funded by the HSUS and ASPCA in Ohio and Michigan. In fact that is the only thing that does work long term.It has been proven that these killing sprees only cause the remaining population to breed more.

  8. NJ Real Estate Wire

    There has been no shortage of opinions on this subject. I had to reject quite a few as they were quite off color.

    I am not sure we will solve this debate…and we are only half way through the Essex County Deer Management Program that ends on Thursday 2/28.

  9. Carol Malik Kirsch (Citizens for Effective Deer Management)

    I am very heartened to see the many comments opposing the multifaceted deer slaughtering that continues to be conducted in our community. For the last year, our organization has studied the related issues and has attended all regular Township Committee meetings. We have provided research both publicly and privately, have offered suggestions, and have voiced our concerns and disapproval of these activities, all to no avail.

    I would like to urge the individuals who have offered their input on this subject to make their opinions known, not only to Township Committee members, the majority of which are adamant supporters of this slaughter; but to the Item, as well, who continually and categorically support the Township’s stand, refraining from the exercise of any intellectual curiosity or independent research of the facts and science as they relate to this issue.

    From an individual perspective, the extremely offensive, exclusively human-centric value system that our community’s continued deer slaughtering suggests, makes the community of Millburn a community that, despite my families 50 year history, has become one which I am eager to separate from as soon as is practical.

  10. Marc Weiss

    Deer are a renewable resource and an excellent form of high protein meat that is steroid free. The deer are a problem, the food banks are in desperate need of protein (can’t get that from cheerios and canned yams)so there is no reason to stop taking deer. This also helps the native vegetation to regenerate as the forests can not support the over abundance of deer.

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