Connecticut Deer:  A rough estimate from the state puts the deer population at about 100,000 in early 2016 and mid 2017, but an analysis by a private group puts the number at 50,000 in 2016.    Another state expert notes that the population has plunged.  Mild winters and abundant acorn crops in 2016-17 and 2015-16 have benefited the deer herd.  Herd analysis at right.  A peak population of about 142,310 in 2004.  Deer and tick research related to Lyme disease.
Connecticut Deer News

... in the northwest hills the population is relatively low, with less than 20 deer per square mile. For areas closer to the shore, deer population densities are more than 20 deer per square mile ... Researchers at UConn ...


 It's Deer Birthing Season, Don't Touch the Fawns, They're OK June 11, 2018 Connecticut,New Canaanite
...  their mothers will leave an odorless, motionless baby up to seven hours when it’s too young to follow her ...  “We ask residents to not touch the fawn for 24 hours ... Ninety-nine percent are gone within that timeframe.”...

Ridgefield, Will Ridgefield Re-Open Deer Hunting Debate? April 17, 2018 Connecticut, USA Patch
... In 2006, the controlled hunting of deer on selected town properties was approved by a vote of 531 to 194. At the April 4 meeting, the selectmen raised the possibility of another town debate and vote about deer hunting on town land...


Shoreline residents see an increase in deer April 5, 2018 Connecticut, WTNH
... East Haven residents are seeing an increase in deer along the shoreline... with more residential properties popping up the deer have no place to go... "The last of the forested area or wooded area is going to disappear so I don't know where they are going to go." ...

New Canaan Reaches Crossroads With Deer Committee April 4, 2018 Connecticut, Patch.com
... Rose says that the committee is unnecessary because it doesn't really do anything. New Canaan has a deer hotline and a person who responds to phone inquiries...

Bear hunting bill shot down March 15, 2018 Connecticut, The Advocate
... Two other separate hunting bills would establish a first-ever night hunt for coyote and statewide Sunday bow hunting on private land for deer. The committee did approve the bow hunting bill in a 19-10 vote, while no vote was taken on the coyote bill...

Discussion about the Tick Management Program to Reduce Risk of Lyme Disease January, 2018 Connecticut
    The recently released report examines the role of white-tailed deer, concluding they do not transmit Lyme but can be a host for ticks ... a group of hunters familiar with the research and having paid for research of their own discuss the data and information on a bowsite.com forum ... concluding, "In a nutshell, 5 years, 87 deer and 1$Md have failed to provide a definitive correlation between deer populations and Lyme disease." ... a comment from one of the study authors is "the theory goes that intact forestland harbors a greater diversity of wildlife and if ticks are feeding on those hosts, there should be a lower percentage of ticks infected with pathogens ... Given the mature nature of Connecticut’s forests, we were seeing more wildlife and more diversity in residential areas where there is far more habitat diversity than in large blocks of forest."

Deer hunters trend toward bows January 19, 2018 Connecticut, CT Post
...  the 2017 deer hunting season marked the fifth straight year in which more deer were harvested by bow than by gun in Connecticut ...  bow hunters had set a new state record in 2017 for deer harvests — 5,648... “The greatest change from 2016 to 2017 can be explained by the lack of acorns in many areas of the state, the deer’s primary fall/winter food source,” ...

Stamford, Deer cull upsets North Stamford residents who question its necessity December 8, 2017 Connecticut, The Advocate
... The first ever deer cull at a North Stamford land preserve has neighbors abutting it up in arms over late notice of the hunt and scant evidence of deer overpopulation ...

Homeowner Finds Fourth Shot Deer on Property November 22, 2017 Connecticut, Westport Now
...  the fourth carcass he has seen on his Taylor Lane property since he and family moved to Westport in 2011... appeared to have been hit by a high-powered arrow, the kind shot from a crossbow ...

A creepy deer disease is spreading north November 14, 2017 Connecticut, Yale Climate Connections
... While EHD is found in many parts of the country, it’s most common in the southeast. But as the climate warms, more midges are moving into the northeast ...

Weston, Devil's Den to close weekdays for limited deer hunt November 14, 2017 Connecticut, The Weston Forum
... The Nature Conservancy will hold its annual controlled deer hunt at Devil’s Den Preserve in Weston ... has been held each fall since 2001, ...

Connecticut deer hunt has big upside in small package November 10, 2017 Meriden Record-Journal
... In 1990, a change was made giving shotgun hunters first crack at the firearms hunting season for deer. One of the reasons was that they would be less “buck selective,” and this proved to be true. In 1991, Connecticut was second only to Maine in deer harvest. Connecticut’s total of 11,305 was 14 percent over the 1990 take...

Ridgefield, Town should slow down pace of the deer hunt November 4, 2017 Connecticut, The Ridgefield Press4h
...  Connecticut DEEP (which generates money from the hunt) estimates 43 based upon a fly-over and then doubling the number (and the last fly-over was 2010) — doesn’t sound too scientific. The state biologist not only comes up with the “official figure” — he joins the Ridgefield hunt. His numbers are disputed by the Yale School of Forestry. Hunt Master Zandri estimates 20...

EHD, Aggressive Ebola-Like Virus Killing Deer In Connecticut October 28, 2017 LunaticOutPost
...   “This is the first time we’ve had a large-scale die-off and confirmation of this hemorrhagic disease in Connecticut,” Andy Labonte, a wildlife biologist ... the EHDV-6 subtype was first identified in 2006 in Indiana and Illinois... Prior to 2006, the disease was only found in Australia ..,

Death of Deer in Connecticut Linked to Hemorrhagic Disease October 25, 2017 NBC Connecticut
... Before 2004, only two subtypes of Hemorrhagic Disease were documented in North America -- EHDV-1 and 2. EHDV-6 was first detected in 2006 in Indiana and Illinois, and has since been reported throughout the Midwest, and from Florida, North Carolina and Maryland..,

Middletown, DEEP reports small die-off in Middletown-area white-tailed deer herd October 24, 2017 Connecticut, The Middletown Press
... more than 50 white-tailed deer exhibiting symptoms associated with Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease primarily in the towns of Middletown and Portland, with a few in Chester, Haddam and Lyme ..,

Ridgefield hosts deer hunt hearing Monday October 20, 2017 Connecticut, The Ridgefield Press
... Selectman Barbara Manners cast the only dissenting vote, claiming she wanted to see scientific evidence that the deer hunt had tangible effect on the town deer population...
     Public Hearing October 19, 2017 Connecticut, Town of Ridgefield
...  the Town of Ridgefield Deer Management Implementation Committee will hold a Public Hearing at 7:00 p.m. on October 23, 2017 at the Ridgefield Town Hall, 400 Main Street, Ridgefield, Connecticut, in the large conference room, to receive comments on the 2017-18 controlled hunt...

Watch for deer, moose on Connecticut roads October 10, 2017 Shoreline Times
... During 2016, approximately 3,700 deer were killed in the state due to collisions with vehicles ...Over 40 moose-vehicle accidents have been reported in Connecticut between 1995 and 2016 ..,

Deer Hunter: Strong Fall Archery Season Expected In Southwest CT September 16, 2017 Connecticut, Newtown Daily Voice
... outlook for the 2017 hunting season is good because mild winters and abundant acorn crops over the past two years have made it easy on deer and challenging for hunters as harvest numbers have been low ..,

DEEP Reports Small Die-off in Local White-tailed Deer Herd September 8, 2017 Connecticut, DEEP News
... a recently-discovered die-off of several deer in the Portland area may be due to hemorrhagic disease ...  The cause of death could not definitively be determined due to the condition of the dead animals, but the manner in which the deer were found led DEEP biologists to suspect that hemorrhagic disease may be the cause..,

Disease may be killing white-tailed deer in Connecticut September 8, 2017 Connecticut, Milford Mirror
... The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) says a recently-discovered die-off of several deer in the Portland area may be due to hemorrhagic disease ..,

It's Only Natural: Deer Hunting in Full Swing in Norfolk August 5, 2017 Connecticut, Norfolk Now
...  an aerial study ...  completed in February of 2007, and determined that the state’s deer population is stable or slightly decreasing, having fully recovered from a sharp decline in the 1990s...  last winter also determined  ... Zone Two ... has the lowest deer density in the state, with just 3.6 deer per square mile. Zone 11, which covers most of Fairfield County, has the highest density in the state at 29.4 deer per square mile...

... Here in Connecticut we don’t have wild hogs. Yet. Although there was a news report of hogs in North Grossvenordale, a town in the northeastern corner ... The current guesstimate is a statewide deer population of 100,000..,

Redding site for tick study July 11, 2017 Connecticut, The Redding Pilot
... “Where we used the combination of rodent bait boxes and fungal spray only is where we had the most success in reducing encounters with blacklegged (“deer”) ticks in people’s backyards,” ... deer reductions caused ticks to feed on alternative other available hosts, such as small- and medium-sized mammals... not able to remove enough deer to reach targeted goals [controversy regarding the deer count]

In Easton, deer head found on road ... June 23, 2017 Connecticut, CT Post
...  a “baby deer head” in the middle of the intersection of Routes 59 and 136, shortly... It unclear why the deer head was there ...

Newtown Man Illegally Harvested a 24-Point Buck June 12, 2017 Connecticut, Patch.com
... hunted and harvested the buck from Pennsylvania ... and illegally brought the whole buck back to Connecticut ...

  Deer stuck on ice, able to rescue itself March 16, 2017 Connecticut, 
Eye Witness News 3
... The animal got stuck on Mount Higby Reservoir which is frozen ...

...  homes and streets in the suburb of Norwalk, Connecticut, were also covered in snow.  In one neighborhood, deer frolicked in the empty street...

As a winter snowstorm dropped several inches on the New York metropolitan area on Tuesday (March 14), homes and streets in the suburb of Norwalk, Connecticut, were covered in snow.


Too Much Hunting Pressure in Zones 11 and 12?  February 22, 2017 Connecticut, Bowsite.com, Glen Ekstrom
   Connecticut hunters discuss this issue on the web site reached with the link above:  CT DEEP Zones 11 & 12 are no longer the place to go for hunter success. Current harvest results for zones 11 & 12  point to over harvest for the past 14 years. It may be time for the CT DEEP to re-evaluate unlimited doe tags, baiting and the extended January season.  See graph below.

Is It Time to End Baiting in CT?  January, 2017 Connecticut,  Bowsite.com, Glen Ekstrom
    [Hunters discuss baiting in Connecticut] ...  the reasons baiting was instituted in 2003:
1. High populations of deer in Zones 11 & 12.    2. Lack of access for hunters to private property.
     ... neither of those reasons may be applicable today. Deer populations have been decreasing over the past 10 years and when you examine the difference in deer harvested per square mile in Zones 11 & 12 as compared to the other 10 zones the increased take is negligible. Zones 11&12 makeup 24.1% of Connecticut, the other hunting zones (1-10) makeup the remaining 75.9%. Only zones 11&12 allow baiting of deer and have done so for the past 14 years. In 2016 zones 1-10 harvested 7,659 deer or (2.08) deer per square mile, zones 11&12 harvested 2,801 deer or (2.39) deer per square mile. If we only look at zone 12 the numbers are (2.14) deer per square mile. 
     Lack of access is not a problem; between landowners opening up property and large blocks of private land being opened up by Aquarion and other entities hunters have the access to get to the deer. It can be argued that the increase in access has become detrimental to the health of the herd as former "reserve" areas have been drastically thinned out over the past few years...

Fairfield County ranks high in 2016 deer hunt January 18, 2017 Conntecticut, CT Post
...  in the 2016 hunting season, a more than 1,400 increase from the previous year ... Bow hunting accounted for nearly half of the 10,570 of deer harvested ...

Deer rescued from ice in Canton January 17, 2017 Connecticut, FOX 61
... The deer did not seem injured. Last week, a deer rescued from a frozen river in Simsbury had to be euthanized ...

Deer Rescued from Ice in Simsbury Euthanized January 9, 2017 Connecticut, NBC Connecticut
... The vet determined the deer had a broken shoulder and jaw, amongst several other injuries ...
     Deer Rescue Transfixes Hundreds Of Thousands Of People January 10, 2017 Conneticut, NPR
...an hours-long rescue operation of a deer hopelessly stuck on ice in Simsbury ... The scared deer splayed on the frozen river was streamed live by several television channels ...
     Deer Trapped on Ice in Simsbury January 9, 2017 Connecticut, NBC New York
... coyotes chased the deer and it wound up on the ice ... they succeeded in pulling the deer off the ice ...

Connecticut Data:  A rough estimate from the state in early 2016 and mid 2017 puts the deer population at about 100,000, down from about 120,000 around the year 2000, peak deer harvest in 2004.  Mild winters and abundant acorn crops in 2016-17 and 2015-16 have benefited the deer herd.  A hunting group observes that Connecticut had 62,189 deer (per statewide aerial deer survey) in 2007; since then Connecticut has seen a decline in the deer population and harvest of approximately 20%; leaving Connecticut with an estimated 50,000 deer or 10 dpsm today.   The lower estimate is more consistent with the decline in reported deer vehicle collisions from about a decade ago.   DVC s (deer vehicle collisions) in Connecticut in 2000 were 3,089 and in 2015 there were 749; a decrease of 76% over 15 years.  The 2015 harvest was 66.2% percent of the peak in 2004.   The increase in the 2016 harvest is attributed to a poor acorn crop that forced deer to more around more as well as several mild winters increasing fawn survival.  
     The record acorn crop in 2015 reduced deer movement and contributed to the lower harvest, but the legalization of Sunday hunting increased the number of hunting days which would increase the harvest.   Hunters reported reduced deer in 2015.  A 2015 study put the 90-day fawn survival rate at 0.22, down from 0.66 and 0.40 in the previous three years, related to the increase in predators.  The last official State estimate was 126,000 in 2006; yet the last State aerial survey showed only 62,189 deer statewide. Connecticut has made a habit of using the 2X factor on their deer population over the last 15 years to estimate from survey.   In 2014, a state expert (Scott Williams) concluded that the deer population has plunged.  A peak population of about 120,000 around 2001.  Most deer hunting is on private land.
     Because of lower deer populations no antlerless deer tags will be issued in 2016 in central parts of Connecticut.  Deer populations are highest in the southwest.  Although the state no longer makes a population estimate, given the difficulty of getting to a reliable number, the agency does track deer density in some particular areas.  Increased predation by  coyote and bobcat populations are thought to be the primary factor for the recent deer population decline, the first measured since the early 1900's when deer were very scarce from over hunting and conservation measures were implemented.  Fawn recruitment in a 2015 study was 0.22 per doe; the population will decline significantly as a result.  Peak of the rut around the last two weeks in November, begins in late October and runs through early January.  
     An important deer count in the Redding and Newton area related to a Center for Disease Control study became a controvery in 2015 when a local hunting group challenged the DEEP's count and hired an aviation firm that found substantially fewer deer. 
    The deer harvest declined by 9.2 percent in 2014 to 11,394.  Overall hunter success was 23 percent.  Most deer are killed on private land.  See the 2014 Deer Program report.  The number of deer killed in vehicle collisions, which approximately follows in proportion to the deer population, fell by more than half from the early 2000's to 2014.  An estimated 3,700 deer killed by vehicles in 2016.  In 2014 there were 1,081 deer vehicle collisions reported [page 20].
    The first statewide deer hunt in recent history was opened in the 1970's. Now, deer densities of 30 per square mile are not uncommon in the state.  Hunting data approximately tracks the deer population.  In 2014, hunters could take two deer, but only one can be a buck.  In Fairfiled County, including suburban areas where deer are considered to be over populated, hunters can take four deer but only one buck.  
     Moose  An estimated 210 moose in 2016, about 100 to 150 moose in the state in 2015, mostly in the northeastern and northwestern wooded areas.  Estimated at 63 in 2004.

Other useful links:
Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (also the Connecticut Division of Wildlife and the Connecticut Fisheries Division)