New Study Tries to Unlock Reasons for Black-tailed Deer Decline August 7, 2010 California


The Department of Fish and Game (DFG), the University of California, Davis and several doctoral candidates recently began a three-year study of habitat changes, predation and land use patterns affecting black-tailed deer in Mendocino County. The decline in the harvest of black-tailed deer over the past 20 years is well-documented.

"We have concentrated our study in Mendocino County to try to find out if and why black-tailed deer populations have declined in some of the state's best habitat," said DFG Associate Wildlife Biologist David Casady, "This study should provide important information for wildlife and habitat managers to better understand the factors involved in the deer population cycles and management alternatives...."Statewide, the harvest of black-tailed deer bucks has declined from 27,846 in 1989 to 14,895 in 2009, a drop of 46 percent. In the counties in the study area zone, harvest numbers have dropped from 3,013 to 1,297, a 57 percent decline.

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