Delaware Deer News

... 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,  capegazette.villagesoup.com 
... 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.gov 
...  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.” ...

Tough year in Delaware for deer hunters December 2, 2013 Delaware Wave
... Rogerson said epizootic disease impacted deer harvests in Sussex County this year. Hunters there harvested 8.4 percent fewer deer last hunting season, with the biggest impact in the Georgetown and Milton areas.  Harvests there were down 22 and 26 percent ... Hunters bagged more than 13,000 deer during the 2012-2013 season ...

...  officials say five people were cited on charges including untagged deer, illegal method of take, hunting by persons prohibited and illegally selling wildlife...

Tough year in Delaware for deer hunters November 23, 2013 Delaware, Delaware Online
...  deer mortality last year caused by epizootic hemorrhagic disease spread by biting flies ...  there is less farmland for people to hunt and often people struggle to find an opening on public land... Delaware’s deer population has stabilized, but it is larger than state wildlife officials would like... State officials have a target of 40 deer per square mile of habitat statewide ...

Shotgun Deer Season Started November 20, 2013 Delaware, milfordlive.com 
...  “It’s remarkable that during Delaware’s five-month deer season, nearly 50 percent of the overall annual deer harvest will occur during these eight days in mid-November,” said Deer and Furbearer Biologist Joe Rogerson. “This year we anticipate Delaware hunters will harvest more than 13,000 deer, with nearly half of them taken during the November shotgun deer season.” ...

More human options exist to reduce deer population November 20, 2013 New Jersey, Delaware Online 
...  I have sat in on Fish and Wildlife meetings and have heard hunters want more deer to hunt, and the Division of Fish and Wildlife wants the revenue from hunting licenses. It seems as though the state has a goal that manages deer populations; it does not reduce them. If reducing deer populations was truly a concern, why would the Division of Fish and Wildlife be implementing a coyote hunting season? ...

Shotgun Deer Season Starts Friday in Delaware November 13, 2013 WBOC TV 16
... "This year we anticipate Delaware hunters will harvest more than 13,000 deer, with nearly half of them taken during the November shotgun deer season."  ...  said Deer and Furbearer Biologist Joe Rogerson ...

WDDE 91.1 FM | Delaware's NPR News station
...  “The biggest problem we have is distracted driving ... deer mating season is just part of the problem...   society contributes to that increase in collisions because the deer aren’t just coming into our space; we’re moving into their space too.... “we’re seeing new home builds and new shopping centers and those kinds of things really squishing the deer out of their living space to make more space for our own needs.” ... AAA spokeswoman Jana Tidwell

As deer population grows in Delaware November 1, 2013 The News Journal
... according to state wildlife biologist Joe Rogerson, there are an estimated 140 deer for every square mile of suitable habitat...  In Sussex County, for instance, there are 50.3 deer for every square mile of habitat. All of New Castle County– not just the deer-rich region north of I-95 – is a close second at 47.9. In Kent County, the rate is 30.8.  State officials have a target of 40 deer per square mile of habitat statewide...

Two men charged with illegal hunting practices near Milton October 28, 2013 Delaware, Sussex Countian
... charged with numerous offenses, including carrying a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle, hunting without a license, using a prohibited weapon to take antlered deer, possession of unlawfully taken game and failure to attach a tag to antlered deer...  $1,364 in fines and court costs...

What does 'deer season' really mean for Delaware? October 17, 2013 The News Journal
... The majority of deer harvested in Delaware are typically taken during Delaware’s two shotgun deer seasons: one in November (that corresponds with the deer ‘rut’ or breeding period) and one in January... Delaware deer hunting also includes special, any-method (bow, crossbow, muzzleloader or shotgun) antlerless deer hunting seasons in which hunters may only harvest antlerless deer, or deer with both antlers less than 3 inches in length. .. Delaware handgun deer hunting season usually occurs in January ...

Delaware Deer Season 2013: Hunting Forecast October 4, 2013 Outdoor Life
... 13,302 whitetails were taken [in 2012] ...  more than 45,000 whitetails roaming the state ... 



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Delaware Data:  Estimated population of 45,000 whitetails in 2013.  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. 
     About 100 coyotes in 2013.  Delaware opened a coyote season in 2013, in part to protect the deer population.

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