Suburban Population Management

Examples of Non Lethal Deer Population Management Methods:

Fencing is very effective, but can be expensive.  Fencing and deer repellents. The city of Sequim, Washington, received a state grant to fit their elk with GPS collars with “virtual fence” capability.  Communities and state agencies have created food plots or fed deer outside of towns to draw deer away from problem areas. Although some have proposed reintroducing predators to control urban populations, safety concerns generally make this infeasible, but the effects of a predator (known as the ecology of fear in the literature) can be safely reproduced by using herding dogs, demonstrated successfully by several cases in Canada.  Some wildlife experts suggest that more restrictive leash laws for dogs in recent years have been a factor in encouraging deer to migrate into urban areas and that trained dogs can be used to push deer out of areas where they are causing problems.  Dogs for Deer Management News and information about contraception, sterilization, and relocation are on this page, a few paragraphs down.

News (links to some articles may no longer be active)

Williams Lake creates urban deer brochure May 25, 2017 British Columbia, Williams Lake Tribune
... Rather than pursuing a deer management strategy, staff suggested compiling information and developing an education program for residents on deer proofing their properties.  Council approved $3,000 be added to the 2017 operating budget for an education and communication plan ...

Rochester Hills, Deer campaign continues October 4, 2016 Michigan, C&G Newspapers
... Based on aerial counts taken last February, DeVoe estimates the city’s deer population to be between 1,200 and 1,800... residents concerned about deer eating their shrubbery should contact the advisory committee. ... a packet of information about how to manage deer in gardens... A campaign to increase drivers’ awareness of deer on the roads has helped lower the number of crashes ...

... Unlike a number of Northeast Ohio communities that are turning to bow hunting ... Medina is asking its residents to cooperate in a citywide effort to make its streets and back yards less hospitable ... Special Legislation Committee outlined a three-pronged approach to managing deer. It includes monitoring the deer population, educating the public, and offering a community survey for those experiencing property damage...

Deer population in ENC may be due to development February 17, 2016 North Carolina, WNCT
... Increased development may be having a visible impact on the appearance of deer in residential areas ... N.C. Wildlife Commission Biologist Chris Kent ... suggest that deer have nowhere else to go ... spraying “deer repellant”, planting items that deer do not like to eat, or putting up fencing to keep the animals out...

Keeping wildlife off tarmac is big job at Pittsburgh International Airport January 17, 2016 Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
... Just shooting them [deer] when we see them wouldn’t be an effective way to maintain passenger safety ...A single line of chain-link fencing topped with strands of barbed wire surrounds the entire airport....

Iroquoia Heights’ deer carnage ‘reasonable,’ HCA boss says January 14, 2016 Ontario, Hamilton Spectator
... believes the deer population at Iroquoia Heights will gradually drop because people aren’t feeding them like they did in the past... in 2011 by an advisory committee that considered potential solutions ... including a hunt, which it rejected...  favoured a host of non-lethal approaches, starting with an education campaign to discourage neighbours from feeding deer and a city bylaw banning the practice ...

The next step in getting a handle on our deer herd (editorial) December 6, 2015 New York, Staten Island Advance
... The federal report recommends and "adaptive integrated approach,".., it encompasses the non-lethal methods that are preferred by almost everyone ... deer-proof fences and barricades, supplemental feeding to reduce damage to greenery,  birth control, relocation and modification of the deer's behavior, such as by using visual stimuli and noise... [Read the plan]

Sioux City, Certain plants, fencing and repellants can keep deer out of yards, gardens November 26, 2015 Iowa, Sioux City Journal
... The feeding ban seems to be helping control the deer population, which is on the decline in Sioux City, according to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. The DNR conducts an overnight count in the same area of Woodbury County each year. Twenty-eight deer were seen in 2014, down from 47 counted in 2012...

Got elk? Get paint balls October 23 , 2015 Oregon, Curry Coastal Pilot
...  he got a dog. And he trained that dog to chase off the deer... Problem solved! ...  their bigger cousins — elk ... suggested a paint-ball gun ... SPLAT! SPLAT! SPLAT! ... 
The elk dispersed. Rapidly ...  I’m signing up for paint-ball classes...

River Forest, Deer complaints lead River Forest to consider hunting optionsSeptember 24, 2015 Illinois, Chicago Tribune
... In a letter sent to the village of River Forest by John McCabe of the Forest Preserve District, McCabe said a population management program can only take place with the state's permission... Prior to implementing any management program, McCabe suggests residents construct fences to keep deer off their property as well as install deer-resistant plants...

Are animals invading urban areas? August 2, 2015 North Carolina, Charlotte Observer
... Nils Peterson ... at N.C. State ... noted some adaptive behavior by human residents of new subdivisions.  “At first, they become upset when deer eat their ornamental plants. But 20 years down the road, they either have fences or plants that deer won’t eat.”  Finding better ways to protect animal habitat and include more swaths of nature in our environment won’t just be good for wildlife. Studies have shown that it improves the quality of life for humans ...

Provo city considering urban deer hunt program July 8, 2015 Utah, Utah Valley 360
... The first step toward a deer hunt in the city was when the council passed a law prohibiting people from feeding deer and other wild animals in the city limits — a requirement of the state, said council attorney Brian Jones...  

... Lance DeVoe, a biologist with the city of Rochester Hills, discussed a non-lethal deer management program created and implemented in his city, arguing low-cost methods such as education of residents and improved road signage have been successful.  "There's been about a 40 percent decrease in car-deer accidents and a 75 percent decrease in the complaints coming into the city," ...

USU club aims to help locals deer-proof yards November 26, 2014 Utah, The Herald Journal
... the Utah State University Berryman Club, an arm of The Berryman Institute, a national organization based in the department of wildland resources at USU... Good examples of natives that deer won’t destroy include junipers, sumac, sage, mountain sage and mountain mahogany ... These plants both provide deer with winter food without harming the plant ...

North Salt Lake homeowners freaking out over deer September 8, 2014 Utah, Ogden Standard-Examiner 
.... the city council has approved eight-foot-high fences, insuring that only the most athletic of deer can compete for your garden vegetables... Besides, this is as it should have been from the beginning — not fencing in the animals, like at that depressing “zoo” at Lagoon, but fencing in the humans instead...

Medford, Deer fencing issue debated in Medford August 21, 2014 New Jersey, South Jersey Local News 
... township planner Scott Taylor came up with recommendations that would allow 8 feet high open deer netting in back and side yards.  Standards would require the netting be black or dark brown material that is specifically designed for the eye to look through and beyond it...

Haworth to take steps to limit deer on private property May 22, 2014 New Jersey, North Jersey 
... An amendment to local land use laws calls for increasing the allowable height of a mesh fence to help keep deer from homeowners' backyard... Hakim suggested up to 9 feet because deer typically do not jump higher than 7 feet...