California Deer News

... in a memo from Yosemite National Park that reported that 25 bears have been hit by cars this year in the park. That’s one for every week of summer. In addition, about 10,000 deer a year are hit and killed on California roadways...

... . "When you restore the balance of an ecosystem by restoring the top predator, the wolf in this case, it brings the population of prey species like elk and deer back into better balance with the ecosystem," [the California deer population has fallen by about 80 percent since its peak in the early 1960s, the most dramatic decline of any state ... Long Term trends for California deer]

Collision course: car accidents with deer spike during migration season October 21, 2014 California, Siskiyou Daily News
... Highway 3 in Scott Valley ... $1 million was put into a roadside animal detection system....  four signs that were supposed to warn drivers when something triggered the sensors. The system proved to be a bust, and by the end of January all radar equipment, video cameras, warning signs and data collection devices were removed...

...  San Mateo County farmer John Muller ...  the lack of rain made nearby hills barren and coastal deer were starving and looking for feed ...

... There is an astonishingly large deer population in this area... We often see up to eight deer at a time on our 1/4 acre property. Four of the deer spend enough time in our yard that we recognize them on sight: two mother deer and their yearlings...

Climatic and density influences on recruitment in an irruptive population of Roosevelt elk HD Starns, MA Ricca, A Duarte, FW Weckerly - Journal of Mammalogy, 2014
... . Using an 18-year time series of population abundances of Roosevelt elk  inhabiting Redwood National Park in northwestern California we assessed the influence of population size and climatic variation on elk recruitment ... density-dependent recruitment differed between when the population was declining and when the population increased and then stabilized at an abundance lower than at the start of the decline...

Alturas, A deer invasion are challenges for North State towns October 13, 2014 California, Sacramento Bee
... City yards offer a safe haven where deer are protected from predators, said Andrew Hughan, a department spokesman... “I’d hate to think we’d have to shoot them all.” ... said Alturas Mayor John Dederick...

G&F Deer Forecast October, 2014
... The tag quota for the B zones was lowered from 55,000 to 35,000 a couple years ago, but they are still sold on a first-come, first-served basis. The demand does not exceed the supply by much, so you can get a B tag if you don’t wait until the last minute to put in for it...

These were at the Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Carmichael... Apparently, they can read signs! - October 11, 2014



Buck entangled in electric net fencing September 30, 2014 California, Wildlife Emergency Services
... rescue organizations like ours must notify CDFW and receive authorization before responding to emergencies involving big game species... The deer was an adult male and presumably "in rut"... It took nearly 4 minutes to clear the antlers... Immediately, the buck spun right around for a quick charge. The herding boards fended off his aggression until he collected his wits and headed off into the woods.

Deer Goes for Swim in Backyard Pool at Encino Home September 27, 2014 California, ktla.com 
... Its antlers became tangled in the pool’s cover ... The injured buck briefly struggled at the edge of the pool before managing to climb out. ...
     Little Deer Gets Into Big Trouble In Encino Swimming Pool September 27, 2014 California, CBS Local Media-Los Angeles
... Animal Control officers caught up with the little buck and tranquilized him.
They told the homeowner they would give the deer a thorough check-up and then take him back into the wild ...


   The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is asking hunters to help prevent the introduction of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) into California. CWD is a neurologic disease that is fatal to deer, elk and moose.  Out-of-state big game hunters should review CDFW’s hunting regulations regarding interstate transport of deer and elk before bringing game meat across state lines.www.fgc.ca.gov/public/notices/declaration.aspx.
     “If an infected carcass is transported into California and is improperly disposed of in deer or elk habitat, it could result in infection of California cervids,” said CDFW Senior Wildlife Veterinarian Dr. Ben Gonzales. “If it enters the state, CWD has the potential to devastate our cervid populations and severely impact deer and elk hunting in California.” ...

B-zone deer population holding steady September 17, 2014 California, Lake County Record Bee 
... The hunter success rate in 2013 for the B zones was 23 percent. Greg Giusti of Kelseyville hunted during the bow season in the B zone at Klamath Mountains and his group counted a total of 557 deer, 24 being legal bucks forked horn or better, during a four-day period.  They also counted 60 spike bucks. [About 15% bucks, 4% mature bucks, not a sustainable demographic] ...

Fall General Hunting Seasons Opening Soon September 15, 2014 California, CDFW News
... The upcoming California general deer and bear seasons are some of the most popular hunting opportunities in the state... CDFW also offers hunts on private lands through its SHARE Program and Private Lands Management Program. ... 2014 Deer Seasons ...

... Caltrans has applied for $2 million in federal funding for the environmental and engineering design phases of a future wildlife crossing over U.S. Highway 101 at Liberty Canyon Road in Agoura Hills. In the interim, Caltrans is providing wildlife fencing in Liberty Canyon to prevent wildlife mortalities along the freeway until a permanent structure can be built. The highway presents an impassible barrier for wildlife migrating into or out of the Santa Monica Mountains.  A new wildlife crossing promises to provide an improved habitat connection that will sustain and improve the genetic diversity of wildlife in the area...

... We analyzed 27 years of mule deer harvest data from Camp Pendleton, California... we determined that eviscerated body mass of southern mule deer ... was affected by precipitation and relative abundance. We also found that deer were able to recover from periods of poor nutrition and overcome cohort effects by 2.5 years of age, which has not been demonstrated in other ungulate populations. This study demonstrates that body mass can be used as a tool to assess the nutritional state of a population ...

CDFW to Hold Public Outreach Meeting Regarding Type A and B Wildlife Areas September 9, 2014 California, CDFW News
     The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Bay Delta Region will hold a public meeting to discuss the impacts of the statewide drought on Type A and B wildlife areas. The meeting will be held on Monday, Sept. 15 from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. at the Solano County Mosquito Abatement District Office, 2950 Industrial Court, Fairfield (94533).  CDFW will provide hunters with updates on habitat conditions, availability of water for wetlands and possible impacts to hunting programs on public lands. State wildlife areas to be discussed include Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area and the Grizzly Island Wildlife Area complex.  Hunters will have the opportunity make comments and provide recommendations to CDFW staff...
     According to state law (Title 14 CCR, section 1758), CDFW shall annually provide an opportunity for hunters to comment and make recommendations on public hunting programs, including anticipated habitat conditions in the hunting areas on Type A and B wildlife areas.

... The California Deer Association (CDA) is pleased to announce the hiring of Roman Porter as CDA’s first Chief Executive Officer (CEO)...

... Even as the drivers were in a rush to get home after the end of their work week, they slowed down to give the deer the full use of the bridge, staying a safe distance behind them... The pair of deer hopped on the Golden Gate Bridge at about 5:30 p.m. and they had finished their trek to the other side by 6 p.m ...

Deer stop traffic while jogging across Golden Gate Bridge September 5, 2014 California, San Jose Mercury News
... Two northbound deer briefly stopped traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge on Friday evening as they made a run for the hills of Marin County, according to the California Highway Patrol.  The deer, reported at 5:24 p.m., appear to have entered the bridge from the south ... [Photo credit: Rydalia @ Rydalia]

Two deer took a walk on San Francisco's iconic Golden Gate Bridge on Friday evening, September 5, holding up the evening's peak hour traffic. California Highway Patrol were called but were called off while en route because the deer were already off the bridge and on their way to their destination somewhere in Marin. - September 5, 2014



... There will be 12 or 13 of these special fundraising tags reserved for 501(c)(3) nonprofit groups to sell, which will allow the highest bidder to hunt bighorn sheep, deer, elk and pronghorn antelope in California. Nonprofit organizations compete for a chance to auction these special fundraising tags, which hunters can only buy through such auctions. ... A call for applications and the required application form are available on the CDFW website at www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/hunting/fundraising/. Applications must be received by 3 p.m. on Sept. 29, 2014...

California Deer Population Decline August 23, 2014 SF Gate
... In the Bay Area, most people see deer at parks with meadows, at golf courses and at homes in the foothills ... But statewide, the deer population has dropped from 2 million in the 1960s to about 445,000 ... For 30 years, the state's population growth has converted about 75,000 acres of wildlife habitat per year to housing. Predation from mountain lions is higher than at any time in the past 100 years. The ability of habitat to sustain wildlife in many areas has failed from commercial use...

11th Year of Free Big Game Hunts for Juniors Hunters August 20, 2014 California, The Outdoor Wire
... Fifteen lucky junior hunters will be selected in a free, random drawing for either one of five guided antlerless deer hunts or one of 10 guided hog hunts at the famous Tejon Ranch for the 2014 season. This year the California Deer Association (CDA) will hold its 11th Annual "Sharing the Tradition" junior hunt drawing...

Ronald Caspers Wilderness Park, San Juan Capistrano, Orange County, California, USA - August 18, 2014



Hunter accidentally shot on opening day of deer season August 9, 2014 California, Santa Rosa Democrat
   A hunter was accidentally shot Saturday morning by one of his companions in a remote part of Napa County north of Lake Berryessa...

Yup - this is Oakland CA. I worry about the deer and other wildlife not getting enough to eat because of the drought. So far, so good for the family of deer in our hood. - August 9, 2014



Why some deer don't shed their antlers ... August 8, 2014 California, Lake County News
... Deer that don't shed their antlers are commonly called “stags.” This is usually the result of some kind of injury (or maybe deformity) of the testicles.  Testosterone plays a role in both antler development and shedding ...

Hunter indicted in huge Rim fire near Yosemite August 6, 2014 California, Los Angeles Times 
..a 32-year-old bow hunter suspected of starting the campfire that sparked last year's Rim fire, the third-largest blaze in recorded state history ... .on a deer-hunting trip, ignored the temporary restrictions that were in place for the national forest and kindled a fire that spread beyond his control ...

California Zone A deer season opens Saturday August 5, 2014 Lake County Record Bee 
... The drought has had a major impact on the county's and state's deer population...  Approximately 250 bucks were taken in the county in Zone A in 2013, a far cry from the 1950s when the county produced 1,500 bucks annually. Drought, loss of habitat, predators and the increasing human population all have taken their toll on the county's diminishing deer herd... the limit is two bucks forked horn or better...

Why is there no game fencing along California highways? July 29, 2014 California, The Modesto Bee 
...  Because game fences are expensive, they are primarily installed just along the major migration routes... According to CDFW Game Program Manager Craig Stowers, CDFW has instead focused primarily on routes that migratory deer move through, as they are highly traditional and tend to move through the same areas year after year...

Trail camera footage of some really nice blacktail deer bucks, and a doe and fawn, as well as some big stinky wild hogs. - July 26, 2014


...  The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is offering a draw for an apprentice deer hunt on the Chimineas Unit of the Carrizo Plain Ecological Reserve.
The two-day hunt, which is being offered in cooperation with the California Deer Association (CDA), will be held Sept. 13-14 on the 30,000-acre reserve in San Luis Obispo County...

... The California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (CDFW) Shared Habitat Alliance for Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) program will be providing public access for big game and upland game hunts this fall... For more information about each SHARE property and the opportunities available please go to http://www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/hunting/share/.
       These opportunities were made possible by the SHARE Program, which offers incentives to private landowners who allow wildlife-dependent recreational opportunities on their property. Participating landowners receive liability protection and will receive compensation for providing public access to or through their land for wildlife-dependent recreational activities. The goal of the SHARE Program is to provide additional hunting, fishing and other outdoor recreational access on private lands in California.

...  the officer used a knife to slash the deer's throat. It died soon afterward.  Modesto police spokeswoman Heather Graves said the deer may have been hit by a car because it had injuries to its hips and one of its eyes was missing.   The deer also had a broken leg...

Modesto Police Call Wrong Agency During Deer Chase July 16, 2014 California, FOX 40 
... It wasn’t until he crashed into a window that officers were able to wrap a catch pole around his neck... Modesto Police called Stanislaus County Animal Services to help with the deer, but they weren’t able to reach anyone .... They should have been calling the California Department of Fish and Wildlife...

Deer Tag Quota for the D6 Zone Has Been Filled July 16, 2014 California, CDFW
... The California Fish and Game Commission (FGC) finalized big-game tag quotas at its April 15 meeting in Ventura. Notable changes from the 2013 hunting season included a reduction in the D6 Zone general season tag quota from 10,000 to 6,000... In the summer of 2013, the Rim Fire burned approximately 257,000 acres in Tuolumne and Mariposa counties. The U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service subsequently issued Rim Fire Closure Order 2014-01, which closed the burned area through Nov. 18, 2014. This closure encompasses approximately 175,000 acres of public and private land, including popular deer hunting locations in the D6 Zone such as Cherry Lake, Kibbie Ridge and Crocker Ridge in Tuolumne and Mariposa counties.
     CDFW usually issues 10,000 tags per season for the D6 Zone. If the deer tag quota had remained at that level this season, CDFW anticipated a significant increase in hunting pressure on the remaining open areas. Such crowded hunting conditions could have led to an overharvest of the accessible herds, dropping buck-to-doe ratios below management objectives.

This Weekend, Behold The Giant Buck Moon July 11, 2014 California, Mashable 
...  July's perigee full moon is called a Buck Moon, since young male deer are said to sprout their antlers around the time of its appearance ...

As we were hiking back from Bumpass Hell in Lassen Volcanic National Park we saw this very pregnant deer grazing in the meadow. Later that day while hiking King's Creek Falls we saw a doe and a very new fawn with all her spots but didn't get video. Beautiful! - July 9, 2014



... "I was awakened by a young fawn. I didn't know at the time since I was in such a deep sleep, but it was a fawn screaming," said Weber...Fish and Wildlife told KTVU it will not be hunting the deer since it hasn't harmed or threatened any people...

Mountain Lion Traps Set Up in Bay Area Foothills July 3, 2014 California, NBC Bay Area
... A group that researches big cats in the Bay Area is setting up bait stations around the region’s foothills in an effort to catch mountain lions roaming near neighborhoods... The Bay Area Puma Project ...

CDFW To Hold Public Workshop on Lead Bullet Ban Implementation June 30, 2014 California, CDFW News
... A CDFW representative will detail a proposed implementation plan, the PowerPoint is available on the CDFW website. Following the short presentation, interested parties can make comments and provide input that will help shape CDFW’s final recommendation to the Fish and Game Commission, which CDFW anticipates presenting at the Commission’s meeting in Sacramento in September... individuals and organizations may email comments to wildlifemgmt@wildlife.ca.gov (please use “Nonlead implementation” in the subject line) ...

Deer Diary, California Deer History June 18, 2014 California, Good Times 
... the Huichol. Before the arrival of the Spanish in the 16th century, more than 10,000 people lived on California’s coast between Big Sur and San Francisco. Dating back some 15,000 years ... The deer is the most sacred of animals for the Huichols, the symbol for the heart, intuition, and higher self, says Secunda ...

Protecting Native Habitat and Species Through Deer Population Management June 17, 2014 California, Catalina Island News (press release)
... To curb the growth in the deer population, 60 percent of the 500 hunting tags issued will be for does during the 2014 hunting season.... The deer belong to the State of California and were brought to Catalina in the 1920s and 1930s by the Los Angeles County Forestry Department for the purpose of hunting. The expected hunting audience never really materialized, and the Black Jack Hunting Camp was abandoned after just four years of operation...

...  the California Fish and Wildlife Commission voted 3 to 1 to list the wolf as endangered... Opponents said wolves carry diseases and have been responsible for dramatic declines in wild elk herds in Yellowstone National Park … Weiss says restoring wolves to their natural place re-balances ecosystems by changing the behavior of elk and deer...

... Following last year's 257,000-acre Rim Fire, the adjacent town of Groveland, population 601, in Tuolumne County, has become the destination for deer, bears, mountain lions and other wildlife.  "We have anywhere from 20 to 30 deer on our soccer field each night," ...

...  The deer was still standing on shore. Beach goers had been very respectful and kept their distance, until a lone jogger blatantly disobeyed signals to stay clear, and ran right between the officer and the animal.   The deer bolted into the ocean, swimming as fast as it could ... Using a dog slip leash, she was able to harness the deer and lead it to shore...  a great effort from so many people to help this wild creature...

Thoughts on California's Wolf Listing June 6, 2014 California, Hunter Landowner
... Wolves live on ungulates – deer and elk. In a perfect world,  California should step up and fund a campaign to improve habitat for wolves in California, which really would be a campaign to improve deer and elk herds ... Oregon has the elk needed to feed wolves and California not...

Nonnative mule deer now in Catalina Island Conservancy's cross-hairs June 6, 2014 California, Los Angeles Times 
... the conservancy that owns nine-tenths of this island has shot, trapped and shipped out thousands of goats, pigs and bison ... This year, for the first time, the Catalina Island Conservancy will require that more does than bucks are taken during hunting season ... 60% of the 500 tags we issue will be for does ...

     At its May 22 quarterly meeting, the Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) approved approximately $22.1 million in grants to help restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat throughout California. Some of the 23 funded projects will provide benefits to fish and wildlife – including some endangered species – while others will provide the public with access ...

... CDFW’s random drawing fund-raising program includes tags for deer, elk and pronghorn antelope. This year the program will not include a bighorn sheep tag drawing. The drawings for deer, elk and antelope are open to any resident or nonresident 12 years of age or older as of July 1, 2014. The cost to enter the drawings is $5.97 per entry, per hunt...

California Drought Greatly Affecting Wildlife May 15, 2014 Guardian Liberty Voice
...  inland California’s already declining population of deer is having a very difficult time with a loss of vegetation and sufficient water supplies. Deer will be forced to migrate to new land in search of adequate food and water ...

Don't get mad, get informed. Learn about deer resistant plants and other strategies for co-existing with deer in your garden.



Deer herded back to mountains after running into freeway traffic May 14, 2014 California, The Burbank Leader 
... All lanes on the northbound Golden State (5) Freeway in Burbank were stopped temporarily Wednesday ... “They were just kind of herded back to the mountains ... Nobody was hurt. It’s a miracle almost.” ...

Pumas can't order in, so they eat out May 11, 2014 California, San Francisco Gate
... California's deer population has declined from 2 million in the 1960s to 850,000 in the 1990s and an estimated 445,000 this past winter, according to DFW... The big question is for areas where there are hungry mountain lions, yet there aren't enough deer left to go around: What will the lions eat next? ...

Two deer found dead in Hillsborough, mountain lion suspected May 9, 2014 California, San Mateo Daily Journal
... deer being found partially eaten on Tartan Trail Road in Hillsborough seem to be connected with a mountain lion, according to Hillsborough police. There was one incident on Wednesday and another Friday ...

... Gardeners may disagree, but the deer population in the state has been dropping steadily. In the 1960s, state officials say, there were more than 2 million deer in California. Now, there are only about 500,000. The drought will have an effect on them, too, as water sources become scarce and vegetation dies...

California Wildlife Center Spring Open House April 27 April 24, 2014 California, Topanga Messenger
... Join California Wildlife Center (CWC) on April 27, from noon to 4 p.m., for an afternoon of behind-the-scenes tours ... An infant Mule Deer being bottle fed at the California Wildlife Center in Calabasas... CWC is located at 26026 Piuma Road, Calabasas, CA 91302. For more information: cawildlife.org.

Baby deer rescued near Dominican Hospital April 22, 2014 California, Santa Cruz Sentinel
... a fawn stuck in an area behind the hospital with no mother in sight ... The task of reuniting the fawn falls onto Wildlife Emergency Services, a Moss Landing-based nonprofit that helps with wild animals found in distress ...

... The California Fish and Game Commission (FGC) finalized big-game tag quotas at their April 15 meeting in Ventura. A total of 204,337 deer [FGC has issued about twice as many tags to kill bucks as there are available bucks in the state], 316 elk, 200 pronghorn antelope and 14 bighorn sheep tags were approved for distribution to California’s hunters for the 2014 hunting season... Stuart Itoga, CDFW Big Game Program Coordinator. “We are still dealing with the after-effects of several large wildfires, and the drought conditions are not helping the habitat recover. A prolonged drought could negatively impact big game species populations, but the biggest hurdle for hunters now is gaining access to hunting grounds.” ...

      With cooperation from local landowners, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) recently captured and attached telemetry collars to 10 adult female black-tailed deer before successfully rereleasing them in western Siskiyou County.  The capture began a five-year investigation into factors responsible for declining population trends in the far north state. Beginning next year, CDFW plans to collar and monitor up to 50 adult females annually for this study.  The does were captured April 2 using helicopter net-gunning techniques, then carried to a base camp where biological samples and measurements were taken...

... To address concerns about deer and distracted drivers, the Los Altos Hills City Council is set Thursday to consider spending up to $5,000 on traffic calming measures for Fremont and Robleda roads...

... A good tip on the Californians Turn in Poachers and Polluters (CalTIP) hotline – combined with the well-trained nose of a K-9 wildlife officer – led to the recent conviction of a deer poacher in Susanville.  In June 2013, Warden Nick Buckler received a CalTIP from a concerned citizen regarding dangerous shooting activity southeast of Susanville. Suspecting a possible poaching incident, Warden Buckler searched the area and located a dead doe ... The condition of the carcass suggested the deer was killed by a shotgun blast....

Now that's a deer of a different color April 12, 2014 California, San Francisco Gate
... The Bay Area's one-of-a-kind partially albino black-tailed deer was sighted last week in Marin County for the first time this year...about a 75-pound doe with a tan body and yet a white face and forehead ...

Reduction in the number of deer tags recommended April 9, 2014 California, The Trinity Journal 
... Concerned that Trinity County deer herds appear to have experienced a drastic decline in numbers over the past 20 years, the Trinity County Fish & Game Advisory Commission has recommended to the California Fish & Game Commission a reduction in the number of deer hunt tags available here from two tags per person to one and a reduced season in the state regulations scheduled for update this year...

KL Monteith, VC Bleich, TR Stephenson, BM Pierce… - Wildlife Monographs, 2014
...  We intensively monitored nutritional and life-history characteristics of this population during 1997–2009 as it recovered from a population crash, which occurred during 1985–1991.  Deer in Round Valley migrated to high-elevation summer ranges on both sides of the crest of the Sierra Nevada (Sierra crest), where a rain shadow resulted in a mesic and more forested range on the west side compared with xeric conditions east of the Sierra crest... Our results indicate that management and conservation of large herbivore populations could be improved by integrating indices of nutritional condition into current monitoring and research programs. We offer a method to estimate the proximity of a population to nutritional carrying capacity (NCC) that is based on nutritional status of the population relative to population performance (termed animal-indicated NCC)...

Studies planned to monitor Siskiyou deer herds April 4, 2014 California, Siskiyou Daily 
... Siskiyou County’s deer herds have experienced declining population trends, and two large-scale studies are expected ... helicopter surveys in 2009 covering 308 miles found only 163 deer, with males constituting less than 3 percent of the count... there are also efforts underway at the state level to provide a state-wide deer strategy, but it has been stalled multiple times...

     The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) along with partners have successfully completed the capture of 36 tule elk from the San Luis National Wildlife Refuge in the San Joaquin Valley, relocating them throughout the state.  The collaborative effort included the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation as well as volunteers from federal and state agencies who provided time, expertise and other needed resources to help this capture go smoothly.
     “Seventy years ago, tule elk were on the brink of extinction and down to just a handful of animals,” said Senior Environmental Scientist Joe Hobbs. “Through CDFW’s wildlife management protocols and collaborative efforts with other wildlife organizations, we now have healthy and thriving herds across the state. It’s one the greatest wildlife success stories of our time.”  Tule elk are one of three sub-species of elk and are found only in California...

... a scheduled update on deer herd studies in Siskiyou County. A county task force in 2008 established a deer management plan, and a number of its solutions were dependent upon extensive data collection to better understand what factors have had deleterious effects on deer populations...


California data: The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) estimated  443,289 deer in 2013, down from about 850,000 million in 1990.  Our population model puts the current population at below 400,000, down from the peak of about 2 million around 1960. Historic and recent population estimates from CDFW do not track with the declining deer harvest data  See a Long term deer population estimate for information on reasons for the decline. Habitat loss, fragmentation, and fire suppression resulting in denser forests have been factors contributing to the decline of deer populations throughout the West. Also contributing to the population decline in California appears to be the large number of deer tags issued by the Game Commission.   In 2014, a record drought year,  the Game Commission authorized about twice as many buck tags as there are available bucks in the entire state.  Given the history of a large number of tags issued, hunter success in California is lower than in any other state.  If California hunters had the national average hunting success rate, the wild herd would be wiped out.  CDFW generates revenue from the sale of tags.  
      Evidence suggests that another contributing factor in California may be the long-term policy of the California Fish and Game Commission (CFGC), essentially bucks only hunting, resulting in highly skewed deer population demographics, as might be found in a poorly managed game preserve.  The reported 2013 harvest was 13.8% of the peak harvest reported in 1956.  No other state in recent history has experienced this much of a decline. No other state has followed an essentially bucks only harvest nearly as long as California. The state also takes a high percentage of young bucks, resulting in relatively few mature bucks. The national management trend is to balance herd demographics. Deer managers around the country often comment to the press about the dangers of persistent skewed demographics. A 2009 study of deer in Siskiyou county found only 3 percent males.  More information with the long term population estimate.  
     Other western states facing declines in their deer population, such as Colorado and Wyoming, are making a major public effort to get the public involved in finding solutions.  The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is hiding this decline from the public.  During the 1980's, when Idaho was selling too many tags to sustain the herd, the people of the state pressured the agency, sales were reduced, the herd recovered.
           The mountain lion population is thought to have peaked in 1996 at about 6,000 and was guessed to be about 4,000 in 2010.  Estimated $400 million related to deer hunting in the state annually, but on a steady decline.

Useful Links:
California Roadkill Observation System Report what you see, the roadkill incidents are saved to a database that is mapped and used at U.C. Davis for Wildlife Research.
Wildlife Observer:  Cam-WON provides a service to operators of wildlife cameras to manage their camera network in a web-based environment enabling sharing of photos and data from their projects.
California Essential Habitat Connectivity, science and collaboration for connected wildlands.
- New Strategic Vision as California Fish and Game becomes California Fish and Wildlife
 -  Wildlife Fawn Rescue of Sonoma County Wildcare. An Organization Devoted to Living Well with Wildlife in San Rafael, California 

Tweet on the twitter timeline below by using the hash tags #deer #california

Tweets About Deer in California.


Closure of California Deer Refuges to be considered by the legislature. The report, which was recently made public, is a result of public input and comments the department has gathered in regards to its proposal to eliminate the refuge status of 19 state game refuges, effectively opening those areas to hunting. A full copy of the report is available on the department's Website at www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/gamerefuges 

CDFW Fish and Wildlife News


Tweets Related to California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Tweets about @CaliforniaDFW



You Wouldn't Know How Far The Deer Population in the State of California Has Fallen If You Relied on the Graphic on the California Department of Fish and Wildlife's Website 
The bottom part of the graph below (dark blue line) was taken from the CDFW website, the brown line is the estimate from our population model that takes alternative assumptions for the reporting rate and the sex of the deer harvest then takes weighted average of the estimate for each year and applies a two year moving average against the harvest data.  This estimate was presented to the Western Section of the Wildlife Society's meeting in 2014.  The CDFW graph significantly distorts the deer population trend.  See more information about the long term deer population trend for California or read the recently published peer-reviewed research paper [PDF] documenting this information.