Delaware Deer News

... The mobile-friendly Hunter Trapper Registration system (HTR) allows hunters and trappers to obtain required Harvest Information Program (HIP) numbers, License Exempt Numbers (LEN), manage deer registration and snow goose permits, report snow goose harvests, and retrieve lost registration and permit numbers...

The impacts of white‐tailed deer browsing and distance from the forest edge on soybean yield JE Rogerson, JL Bowman, EL Tymkiw, GM Colligan… - Wildlife Society Bulletin, 2014
... During 2003–2006 in Delaware, USA, we investigated where and when browsing was most intense within crop fields and subsequently had the greatest effect on yield of soybeans at an estimated deer density of 21 deer/km2.... We found that deer browsing increased yield, possibly because browsing increases branching of individual plants, and thus the number of bean pods. We also found that the distance from the forest edge affected yield, but independently of deer browsing. Deer damage to soybeans, at a deer density of 21 deer/km2, may be more of a perceptual issue and the use of a chemical repellant would not be justified. ...

Deer remains found in county owned park May 25, 2014 Delaware, The News Journal
... a severed deer head, a pile of bloody innards ...  illegal hunting – or such wildlife remains as he found – in parks or anywhere else in Delaware ... they should immediately call the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s 24-hour enforcement hotline at (302) 739-4580...

DNREC advises Delaware to stay clear of fawns May 20, 2014 Sussex Countian
... the fawning season which is typically between late May and early June... Often, the mother is not too far away ...

... Delaware's first coyote hunting and trapping season  ... Only one coyote, a male, was harvested by a deer hunter in the Hockessin area on Jan. 23...

Deer harvest bounces back from viral outbreak February 20, 2014 Delaware,  Delmarva Now
...  In Sussex County, 7,133 deer were harvested, 10.6 percent more than last year.  Sussex County was hit particularly hard by epizootic hemorrhagic disease, or EHD, during the 2012-13 season, a viral infection that can be deadly... “We’re probably looking at another year or so for that area to fully recover to what it was,” ..

Illegal deer hunt near Georgetown February 17, 2014 Delaware, 
... Two Georgetown men and a Seaford man face illegal deer hunting charges after a Feb. 8 investigation near Georgetown... 

Delaware’s 2013-‘14 deer harvest ranks third all-time February 14, 2014  DNREC News
    Delaware hunters harvested 14,263 deer during the 2013-‘14 season, a 7.2 percent increase from the previous season’s 13,302, DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife announced today. The 2013-‘14 deer harvest ranks as the third all-time highest deer harvest for Delaware.   “We anticipated that hunters would have a successful season this year due to favorable habitat conditions experienced this past spring and summer resulting from the cool and wet spring and summer, coupled with the exceptional hard mast (acorns and other tree nuts) crop last year, which meant Delaware’s deer herd was likely going to be in excellent condition heading into this past hunting season,” said Deer and Furbearer Biologist Joe Rogerson, Division of Fish and Wildlife. “Delaware’s highest deer harvest occurred during the 2004-'05 season, with 14,669 deer. This season, we were only a few hundred deer from setting an all-time record.”
     During the 2013-'14 season, hunters harvested more does than bucks, with 53 percent females (7,558) and 47 percent males (6,705). Antlerless deer – females, juvenile bucks without antlers known as button bucks, and bucks with antlers measuring less than three inches – represented 70.9 percent of the total harvest.
     Since the first year of Delaware’s five-month-long crossbow season in 2010-‘11, when hunters harvested 398 deer, harvest numbers have nearly tripled. This season, 1,058 deer were taken during the crossbow season. Combined with the harvest from vertical bows – compound, recurve and longbows – the total archery season harvest for 2013-'14 was 2,446 deer, ranking as the all-time highest archery season harvest for Delaware which had recently been set last year (1,941 deer).
     Rogerson noted that the deer population seemed to quickly recover from the 2012 outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD), a viral infection that can be lethal to deer, which had an impact on the 2012-‘13 deer harvest, particularly in Sussex County. For the 2013-‘14 season, Sussex County hunters harvested 7,133 deer, up 10.6 percent from last year’s total of 6,448 and was nearly identical to the average harvest for the five years prior to the EHD outbreak.

New coyote hunting season remains open through Feb 28 January 30, 2014 Delaware, 
...  Delaware’s first coyote hunting season ... The coyote is a non-native species that has recently expanded its natural range to Delaware. The state’s new coyote hunting and trapping regulations are based on modern wildlife management science and designed to manage the coyote population at a biologically and social acceptable level... Coyote trapping is the most effective means of coyote population management, with hunting providing an additional population management method while also providing a new recreational hunting opportunity.  With proper management through the new regulations, coyotes are not expected to adversely affect populations of most wildlife species, including Delaware’s white-tailed deer population due to the successful reproductive biology of Delaware’s abundant deer herd; coyotes may indirectly benefit ground nesting birds such as wild turkey by displacing turkey predators...

Delaware to allow hunting coyotes six months each year January 11, 2014 Bethany Beach Wave
... State wildlife officials estimate there are 100 or so coyotes in Delaware ... Nathan Hudson, a Laurel wildlife management consultant and landowner, said Wednesday. “We have a pretty good wildlife balance in Sussex; we have a few more white-tailed deer than we need. My fear is something like this could come in and wipe it out.” ...

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Delaware Data:  Estimated population of 45,000 whitetails in 2013, 25,730 in 2009, 37,563 in 2005. The population likely increased somewhat during 2013, DNREC reports good habitat conditions resulting from the cool and wet spring and summer, coupled with an exceptional hard mast crop (acorns and other tree nuts). In 2013 the herd recovered from an outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD), a viral infection that can be lethal to deer. Sussex County was particularly hard hit by EHD.  DNREC has a target population of 40 deer per square mile in deer habitat areas. During the 2013-'14 season, hunters harvested more does than bucks, with 53 percent females (7,558) and 47 percent males (6,705).  Delaware’s highest deer harvest occurred during the 2004-'05 season, with 14,669 deer. The state targets 40 deer per square mile of habitat statewide ...
    Although deer were abundant in Delaware at the time of first settlement in the 1600's, over hunting and habitat destruction nearly exterminated deer.  To restore herds, hunting was banned from 1841 to 1954  Deer rebounded. By the late 1980's, deer management was focused on reducing the herd.  In 2007 the ratio of deer harvested to licenses issues was about 0.73.  "Unlike most states, when Delaware held its first hunting season hunters were allowed to harvest both bucks and does."  History  About half the deer are taken during the shotgun season.
     About 100 coyotes in 2013.  Delaware opened a coyote season in 2013, in part to protect the deer population.  One coyote was killed in 2013.

Report Poaching:  (302) 739-4580
Other useful links:
Delaware Deer Management Plan "The Mission of the Wildlife Section is to conserve our native wildlife populations, promote responsible resource management and provide wildlife related recreational and educational opportunities for all.

Fish and Wildlife News

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Source:  Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife