Florida Deer Population:  An estimated 700,000 or more white-tailed deer in 2011 through 2015.  Deer harvest peaked in 2008-09.   An estimated 45,000 to 50,000 deer in 1951.  Herd analysis at right.  Historical Florida deer harvest data and news archive.

Florida Deer News

How do you rent a reindeer in Florida? It's complicated December 8, 2016 Tampabay.com
... The Florida Wildlife Commission in 2013, concerned by the disease's spread [chronic wasting], proposed making it illegal to import or possess deer from outside the state. The commission approved the rule, but not before Watts reached out to ask for one change. Reindeer can now visit the Sunshine State for 90 days a year...

Now, more Key deer being killed by cars December 2, 2016 Florida, FlKeysNews.com
... Reproductive organs have been collected from 23 deceased Key deer should the need arise to preserve the species.  The reproductive organs are sent to the South-East Zoo Alliance for Reproduction and Conservation’s White Oak Center, north of Jacksonville, to preserve testicles and ovaries if needed later...

A 14-Foot Burmese Python Had Three Deer in Its Gut December 1, 2016 Florida, Seeker
... "We don't even know how many of them are out there [in the Everglades]."  Burmese pythons are native to Southeast Asia, but for reasons still shrouded in mystery, they became established in the Everglades during the 1990s...  they've been wreaking havoc on the Everglades ecosystem ...

A Long-Gone Parasite Returns to Florida, Leaving a Trail of Dead Deer November 25, 2016 New York Times
... deer stumbling around in confusion, howling in pain, found with their heads hideously disfigured — as if eaten alive... reappearance of a parasite known as the New World screwworm fly ... this is just the latest example of our failure to adequately protect people, agriculture and the environment from consequences of a shrinking world ...
     New study places Key deer herd at 875 November 23, 2016 Florida, KeysNews.com
... roughly 875 following an outbreak of the flesh-eating New World screwworm ... the Key deer population has been increasing by roughly 3.5 percent annually since data was first collected on the herd in the early 1970s... that that percent will drop for 2016 due to deaths related to the outbreak...
... “There's a group [of deer] out here, sort of a subset of the population, that will come right up to you and eat out of your hand ... And that's something that we've always discouraged in the past, but right now it's kind of working in our favor in this emergency situation.”  Eggleston’s team is hand-feeding deer, giving them bread laced with ivermectin, an antiparasitic drug that can prevent infections ...
     Saving Key Deer Means New Relationships With Wild Animals November 10, 2016 Florida, WLRN
... wildlife officials have implored people: Don't feed the deer... about 170 volunteers who’ve been trained to lure the deer close with carrots and apples — then give them bread soaked with medicine...
     New weapon deployed in battle to stop Key deer screwworm outbreak November 8, 2016 Florida, Miami Herald
...The stations — feeding troughs baited with sweet corn, oats and other grains and rimmed with rollers coated with an anti-parisitic — should add another layer of protection to the endangered herd which now numbers about a thousand...
     National effort fights screwworm outbreak November 6, 2016 Florida, Tampabay.com
... The workers are a combination of biologists and veterinarians who are treating deer, performing research and informing the public about the screwworm outbreak... more than 170 volunteers in the Lower Keys treating deer with antiparasitic medication as a preventive measure and to treat screwworm...
     Key deer can now self-medicate November 5, 2016 Florida, FlKeysNews.com
...treated for New World screwworm  ... Tempted by sweet feed, a mixture of grains, oats and cracked corn, deer living in less-populated areas are drawn to the mechanisms, where they rub up against paint-rollers coated in antiparasitic medication doramectin...
     Workers from all over US collaborate on screwworm outbreak November 5, 2016 Florida, FlKeysNews.com
...  aggressive efforts have been taken to fix the crisis. ... Among the 88 workers in the Keys are 43 officers from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Wildlife Refuge System. They are working at the National Key Deer Refuge on Big Pine Key and surrounding islands...
... In early October New World screwworm was found in wild deer and pets in the Florida Keys. Screwworm was eradicated from the U.S. beginning in the 1950s with the release of sterile male flies in the wild ...

... patrolling part of Sarasota County after several deer were killed illegally in the area....

Herd OK despite death toll November 2, 2016 Florida, KeysNews.com (registration)
... the number of deer either euthanized or found dead due to screwworm infestation was 123, with the vast majority being males who were injured when battling each other for mates during rutting season. Their resulting wounds created entry points for the parasites... 119 were male and four were female ...
     Sterile screwworm flies now released in Marathon November 2, 2016 Florida, flkeysnews.com
... “We will continue to do sterile fly releases for up to three life cycles after the last wild fly or last positive case of screwworm infestation is identified ... “If they [Key deer] have an infestation, the maggots are pulled off by hand and the deer get some medication at the wound site,” ...
     Millions of sterile screwworm flies released, and counting October 29, 2016 Florida, FlKeysNews.com
... Key deer deaths stemming from New World screwworms ... does not know how long it will take before the screwworms that feed on live tissue in warm-blooded animals is eradicated... 119 Key deer have had to be euthanized...

Deer beaten to death at environmental education center October 27, 2016 Florida, FOX 13 News, Tampa Bay
... State wildlife agents are trying to figure out who broke into Nature's Classroom and beat three captive deer to death earlier this month...


Key deer deaths slowing down October 26, 2016 Florida, flkeysnews.com
... even though the parasitic screwworm larvae have caused the deaths of 114 Key deer, none had to be euthanized Tuesday.  He said officials are optimistic the numbers will continue to come down ... After receiving a dose of doramectin on a piece of bread, the deer are marked with nontoxic paint in a specific color for the day they’re treated ...

... A comparative examination of bone, teeth, and hooves extracted from the fecal contents revealed that this snake consumed three white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus). This is the first report of an invasive Burmese python containing the remains of multiple white-tailed deer in its gut. Because the largest snakes native to southern Florida are not capable of consuming even mid-sized mammals, pythons likely represent a novel predatory threat to white-tailed deer in these habitats ...

Screwworm Is Killing Key Deer. This is audio from a recent episode of Science Friday: Can the Key deer survive? How did screwworm make its way back to Florida, anyway? Ira talks to Phillip Kaufman, a veterinary entomologist at the University of Florida, and Chris Eggleston, acting manager at the National Key Deer Refuge, about the screwworm’s return and efforts to protect deer and other mammals in the Keys. - October 24, 2016


Key deer get medicine for screwworm October 22, 2016 Florida, flkeysnews.com
...  the Key deer death toll had risen to 107 as of Friday ... many people have asked her what took so long to start treating the infested deer.  “There are many things we have to consider with the application of a chemical. That’s why it takes so much time,” ... looking for volunteers to help prepare food with doramectin ...
... staff were already investigating the illness, officials said, but did not confirm the screwworm infestation until Sept. 30 ... The next time Preziosi said she spotted Toro was on Oct. 4. The wound had worsened, oozing ... Wounded deer were turning up everywhere. ... Oct. 15 ...The wound had grown to the size of a lemon and exposed skull...

Proposed hunting rule changes: Have you provided your input yet? October 20, 2016 Florida, FWC News
     FWC staff have drafted about 115 proposed rule changes for hunting and wildlife management areas that would impact 2017 hunting seasons. At the November Commission meeting, FWC Commissioners will review these rule change proposals and provide guidance to staff on how to proceed. Commissioners will consider the proposed rule changes for final adoption at their February 8-9, 2017, meeting.  If you haven’t provided your input on these proposed changes yet, please take this poll now so your feedback is available for the upcoming Commission meeting. Please click the link below to get started:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Rule_Proposals_2017-18

Volunteers work to save Key Deer from screw worms October 20, 2016 Florida, 7News - WSVN-TV
...  more than 100 have died after being infected by screw worms.  “We’re seeing these pretty grotesque like wounds around the head,” ...  trying to treat healthy deer with drugs ... “It’s an insecticide similar to dog heart worm medication,” ...
     Officials Turn to Drugs to Save Endangered Deer from Flesh-Eating Screwworms October 20, 2016 Florida, Newsweek
...To keep track of the dosing, officials are spraying the deer with small splotches of non-toxic paint after they are fed ... the state declared an “agricultural state of emergency,” setting up a quarantine that doesn’t allow most animals out of the Keys...
     Saving Key deer from a deadly worm takes a new turn October 20, 2016 Florida, Miami Herald
... U.S. wildlife officials are taking the rare step of trying to inoculate Key deer against a ghastly screwworm threatening to wipe out the planet’s last remaining herd...  they plan to hand feed medicine mixed with feed and mark them with paint ...
     Attack of the flesh-eating screwworm pushes up Key deer death toll October 19, 2016 Florida, The Miami Herald
... New World screwworm flies have now caused the euthanization of nearly 10 percent of the endangered Key deer population ... As of Tuesday, the parasitic larvae had caused the euthanization of 97 Key deer ...

Beloved Mayport buck found dead on Mayport Navy Base October 18, 2016 Florida, Florida Times-Union
...  the buck died while trying to untangle its horns from a barb-wire fence on base grounds... Jetty was beloved by people in Mayport, who started a Facebook page for the deer in December 2014 to track his sightings. It now has over 1,500 followers...

Have you provided FWC your feedback on proposed hunting rule changes? October 18, 2016 Florida, FWC News
     At its November Commission meeting, FWC Commissioners will review about 115 proposed rule changes for hunting and wildlife management areas and provide guidance to staff on how to proceed. These rule changes would impact 2017 hunting seasons.
     If you haven’t provided your input on these proposed changes yet, please take this poll now so your feedback is available for the upcoming Commission meeting. Please click this link below to get started.

Can the rare, tiny Key deer survive a flesh-eating worm? October 17, 2016 Florida, Miami Herald
... As of Wednesday, wildlife managers had confirmed 70 dead deer in a herd estimated at just 800 to 1,000. It’s too soon to tell what toll the outbreak will take or whether it could wipe out the herd,.. The screwworm, not seen in the U.S. since the 1960s, is leaving open wounds on the deer ...

... Another was found in the middle of a park where kids were playing nearby, its head eaten away by the screwworm maggots that have caused about 83 deaths — 51 in the past two weeks — among the 1,000-member herd of Key deer, found only in the Florida Keys...

South Florida Deer Research Project Quarterly Update October 14, 2016 Good Hunt - The Ledger
... 10 mortalities were categorized as follows: 7 panther predation events, 1 suspected bear predation event and 2 non-predation events (1 research related, 1 unknown)... The South Florida Deer Research Project

Investigators with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission are trying to figure out who killed two deer. October 13, 2016 Florida


Florida using 'overwhelming force' to fight flesh-eating screwworms October 12, 2016 CNN
... confirmed a local infestation of New World screwworm in Key deer ... first local infestation in the nation in more than three decades ... The way we interrupt that life cycle is to release high numbers of male flies that have been sterilized ...

FWC must keep deer-dog hunters off private property October 10, 2016 Florida, WJXT Jacksonville
... A Leon County circuit judge has ordered the state Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission to stop deer-dog hunters from going on private property within the borders of a state wildlife management area in the Panhandle ...
... the number of confirmed dead Key deer is closer to 60... A plane carrying sterile male flies is set to arrive at Florida Keys Marathon International Airport on Tuesday ... 
... more than 52 of the nearly 1,000 endangered Key deer at the National Key Deer Refuge on Big Pine Key had been euthanized in the past several months due to the infestation of New World screwworm larvae....

Flesh-Eating Worms Have Returned to Florida October 7, 2016 The Atlantic
... U.S. officials confirmed that the screwworm is back. Poor deer in a wildlife refuge in the Florida Keys had somehow picked up the parasite, the U.S.’s first local infestation in 30 years... Last time, the U.S. eradicated the screwworm by releasing sterile males ...

... at the Hillsborough County school's facility in Thonotosassa ... sometime between Sunday night and Monday morning, someone broke into a secured pen at Nature's Classroom and killed the deer...  call FWC at (863) 648-3200...

Screwworm-infected deer in ‘gory condition’Screwworm-infected deer in ‘gory condition’ October 5, 2016 Florida, flkeysnews.com
... photos of Key deer with heads half-gone show the deadly effects of New World screwworm.  More than 40 of the nearly 1,000 endangered Key deer living at the National Key Deer Refuge on Big Pine Key have been euthanized ...

USDA Confirms New World Screwworm Cases in Big Pine Key October 3, 2016 Florida, Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services
     The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed the presence of New World screwworm in Key deer from a wildlife refuge in Big Pine Key, Florida. USDA's National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa, confirms this is a local infestation of New World screwworm. This is the first local infestation in the United States in more than 30 years. In response to this infestation, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam today declared an agricultural state of emergency in Monroe County [ 893.36 KB ], Florida. More information on the screwworm is available at FreshFromFlorida.com.

Screwworm infestation threatens tiny deer in Florida Keys October 3, 2016 Lexington Herald Leader
... about 40 of the 3-feet-tall Key deer have had to be euthanized over the last month due to the screwworm infestation...

GPD, ACSO reunite baby deer with mother September 26, 2016 Florida, The Independent Florida Alligator
... When officers arrived, the fawn was treading water ... It took the deputy about five minutes to get the deer out of the water using a catch stick ... Waiting for her baby, the mother jumped when she saw ...

FWC proposes changes to dog hunting laws September 14, Florida, WFTV Orlando
... The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission wants people to weigh in on many hunting season proposals, including changes to how dogs are used to hunt on public hunting areas across the state. Currently, dogs can be used in taking game mammals and game birds on private lands and some wildlife management areas ... FWC has set up a poll for people to answer questions ...

FWC Wants YOUR Input! September 14, 2016 Florida, FWC News
     Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission staff have drafted proposed rule changes for hunting and wildlife management areas that would impact 2017 hunting seasons.  Please click this link to view proposed rule changes and provide your feedback.

Most Southern forests privately owned September 13, 2016 Florida, Pensacola News Journal
... "Our analysis shows that landowners who harvest are actually helping wildlife, because landowners who harvest are more plugged in, they're working with a forester who is giving them advice ... One of the biggest barriers (to active land management) is cost, so if people can earn an income from their land, they're more likely to reinvest in their forest," ...

Hunter saves deer – from a massive python in Florida September 4, 2016 New York Daily News
... Wilson saw a huge python — a nonnative invasive species overrunning the Everglades — had wrapped itself around a white-tailed deer ... video ... utters an expletive and starts firing his gun ...

... The deer entered the water and began struggling in the water and was unable to return to shore ... lifeguards entered the water with a rescue board and helped steer the deer back to shore...

I was leaving the Fort this morning and saw the Doe with the 3 fawns walking by... August 24, 2016 Florida


Blind Fawn Rescued by Deputy August 22, 2016 Florida, Patch.com
... took the little critter to the Bearss Animal Clinic on Florida Avenue for help... it will be transferred to a local zoo ...

... An examination of the digestive systems of 104 pythons ... two deer ...  More than 1,000 would-be snake-killers participated in areas around Everglades National Park, the heart of the infestation but where hunting is prohibited... estimates range from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands ... got here through the exotic pet industry ...

When you think of the Florida Keys images of diverse marine life probably come to mind. However you might be surprised to hear about a special land-loving creature: the Key Deer, a small subspecies of the North American white-tailed deer. For nearly 60 years the National Key Deer Refuge has strived to protect this beloved yet endangered icon of the Florida Keys. Join us as we learn more about this fascinating animal and this organization’s place in the local community. - August 16, 2016 Florida


Help monitor for CWD; Floridians hunting out of state need to be aware of what they can bring back August 1, 2016 FWC News
     The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is looking to hunters to help monitor the state’s deer herd this coming season for chronic wasting disease, or CWD as it’s more commonly called. And any Florida hunter planning to hunt deer, moose or elk out of state this year needs to be aware of certain laws and regulations aimed at preventing CWD from entering our state...

... hunters can play an extremely important role in CWD surveillance by providing samples from harvested deer for testing...  FWC  ... asking private landowners and hunting clubs to participate in this surveillance effort...  If you’d like to help, contact the FWC by calling the toll-free CWD Hotline at 866-CWD-WATCH (293-9282) ... more in-depth information on this serious disease ...

On the prowl for the Florida panther July 30, 2016 Florida, The News-Press
... Around 1900, nearly 1,300 Florida Panthers — part of the puma family — roamed the state. After all of the subsequent development and corresponding habitat loss, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) estimates there are currently between 100 to 180, the vast majority in our southeast region...

... Why such the early season in the despair of this heat? Well, the rutting activity in South Florida takes place before most anywhere else in the state or the U.S. Responding to hunters’ requests to be in woods during this prime time, FWC opened a summer deer hunting season several years ago...

... 10 mortalities were categorized as follows: 8 panther predation events, 1 bobcat predation event and 1 unknown. In some instances we cannot definitively eliminate the possibility of scavenging, and the causes of all mortality data should be considered preliminary until all reviews are completed...

A video visit to the Florida Keys June 8, 2016 USA TODAY
... Key deer are found here, and nowhere else in the world. You won’t believe how close you can get at the Key Deer National Wildlife Refuge on Big Pine Key ...

... Burmese pythons ... They are so numerous they have become one of the region’s top predators. Research suggests the pythons are responsible for a sharp decline in the population of Everglades marsh rabbits and for a decrease in deer....

... almost hunted to extinction. By 1950, as few as 25-50 of the animals were left... most recent... estimates the herd at 900 to 1,000 ...

... During this quarter, we investigated 29 mortality events. Ten of the 29 mortalities occurred within 14 days of capture (7 occurred within 1-5 days of capture) or appeared to be related to collaring (e.g., animal found dead with leg caught in collar) ... The remaining 19 mortalities ... were categorized as follows: 14 panther predation events, 4 bobcat predation events, and 1 trauma (cause unknown)...
... “Quite often the mother gets hit by a car and killed,” ... Fawn can be very loving and easy going around humans – and that’s a problem. Rescue workers have seen people try to keep orphaned deer as pets... Officials say you could face a $500 fine for keeping a deer as a pet...

Land plan, panthers collide in Collier April 13, 2016 Florida, The News-Press
...  Floridians spoke out against a proposed development area in Immokalee, ...The development would wipe out some deer habitat, which would cut down on the prey base for the big cats... Comments to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service can be made through April 25...

...  arrested two men after they were found to be hunting deer out of season near Picayune Strand State Forest...

... spotted two small heads in the water more than 1,000 yards from shore... they appeared to be fatigued and disoriented ...

Volusia I-4 wildlife underpasses mean safer travel for people, animals March 5, 2016 Florida, Daytona Beach News-Journal
... animals will be able to move freely through any one of 10 crossings built as part of the highway’s widening ... A few spots along the roadway will have man-made hills that go up to the top of the fencing... called “jumpouts” to allow deer or animals that find themselves on the wrong side of the fence a place to escape from the road...

Emergency pumping increases during South Florida's winter soaking February 22, 2016 Sun Sentinel
... The increased draining and additional pumping is aimed at lessening flooding of tree islands in the conservation areas that provide high ground that deer, wading birds and other Everglades animals need to survive...

Fawn run over by tractor mower on mend at Conservancy February 19, 2016 Florida, The News-Press
... This is the earliest in the year the Conservancy of Southwest Florida has ever treated a fawn since they are usually not born until late February or early March.  It is also one of the most severely injured ones they have seen...

Heavy rains lead Scott to seek water fix for flooded Florida February 11, 2016 FMyPalmBeachPost
... how to corral record rainfall without drowning, starving or poisoning wildlife. ... The Everglades Foundation supports the plan, which would send water to Everglades National Park and keep deer from drowning in the flooded catchment area...

FWC working with private landowners to conserve wildlife February 11, 2016 Florida, FWC News
... The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is working with private landowners throughout the state to help provide better habitat for Florida’s native fish and wildlife... The goal for this partnership is to create a one-stop shop for private landowners interested in technical or financial assistance programs. Visit the website at FloridaLandSteward.org.

Residents want deer crossing signs installed for Jetty the Mayport Buck February 11, 2016 Florida, ActionNewsJax.com
... People are worried that because he gets so close to the road, he could get hit... "The deer crossing sign would probably be a good idea," ... Jetty has his own Facebook page...

Heavier-than-usual rain brings threat to Everglades wildlife February 9, 2016 Florida, Sun Sentinel
... Without relief, rising waters could overwhelm tree islands that provide the high ground that deer, wading birds, turtles and other Everglades animals need to survive...

Florida deer hunting continues through Feb. 28 in Zone D February 6, 2016 Florida, Chipley Bugle 
... an additional week  ̶  from Feb. 22-28  ̶  to participate in a late muzzleloading gun season. This unique late season, which occurs on private land only in Zone D, was established to give hunters the chance to hunt the rut, which occurs from mid-January through February in the Florida Panhandle...


FWC officers, deputy help deer stuck in tree February 4, 2016 Florida, wfla.com
... A young Key deer got stuck in a tree fork on Big Pine Key. FWC officers and a deputy on patrol worked to get it out...

... The wildlife habitat goes up 50 percent after a burn... "The new plants take that up real quick. Deer, and other forms of wildlife, really like that regrowth...

... The 8 female deer mortalities are categorized as follows: 5 panther predation events, 1 alligator predation, 1 bear predation event and 1 unknown. The 2 male deer mortalities were categorized as 1 panther predation event and 1 unknown...

Orange Jeep Tours offer a Southwest Florida safari January 15, 2016 Florida, Naples Daily News
... Orange Jeep Tours offers the opportunity to explore 17,000 acres of private preserves adjacent to the town, where they might spy such native wildlife as the American alligator, whitetail deer ...

Facebook fans concerned for Jetty the Mayport Buck January 8, 2016 Florida, First Coast News
... The growing number of Facebook fans hasn’t fazed the newest celebrity of Mayport Village ... Jetty the Mayport Buck, whose fan base reaches close to 900 people, seems content most days just grazing through the marsh ... the biggest concern remains that the unofficial mascot of Mayport may wander in front of traffic...

Florida Panther Habitat Needed, Congressman Insists December 28, 2015 Sunshine State News
... “The Florida panther is one of the most endangered species in the world as less than 180 of them survive today,” the representatives wrote Obama. “As you know, the two greatest threats to the Florida panther are the loss of habitat and automobile-related deaths, both of which are caused by increased development in environmentally sensitive areas....

Biologists go high-tech to track deer December 22, 2015 Florida, Hunter's Handbook
... his project began in January 2015 when over 100 deer were captured using helicopters and net guns and then outfitted with GPS collars. GPS information is being supplemented by remote-sensing cameras (trail cameras) ... For more information ... visit http://myfwc.com/hunting/by-species/deer/project/...

Box-R going back to nature December 2, 2015 Florida, The Times
...  FranklinCounty ... thousands of acres of pine plantation to a more natural condition.... According to FWC, Box-R is managed for a diversity of wildlife species through timber management (thinning and reforestation), prescribed burning and hydrological restoration. Wildlife openings are maintained and enhanced to attract deer, turkey, rabbits ...

The Florida Key Deer is an adorable subspecies of the white-tailed deer, in fact, the smallest one of all. They are unique to the lower Florida Keys, but sadly, their numbers are endangered. - December, 2015


Brandon, Deer Found Hanging From Flagpole at Brandon High November 16, 2015 Florida, Patch 
... doesn’t consider it a crime, yet, ... “It’s like if you threw a dead chicken up there,” ...
     Dead deer found hanging from Brandon High School flagpole November 16, 2015 Florida, The Tampa Tribune
... “If there’s no damage, it might not even be a crime,” said sheriff’s spokesman Larry McKinnon, though charges of trespassing are a possibility... Reagan Hunt, a student at Brandon High School, took this photo ...

FWC changes deer hunting regulations October 29, 2015 Florida, Madison County Carrier
... In five of the six units in Zone C (C1, C2, C4, C5 and C6), which includes Madison County and part of Jefferson County, antlered deer must now have at least three antler points (each point at least an inch long) on one side or have a main antler beam length of at least 10 inches to be legal to take...


2015 Trophy Deer Forecast: Florida October 21, 2015 Game & Fish
... The majority of hunters preferred antler regulations to protect one and a half year bucks from harvest. It’s not trophy management; it’s a delay in harvest to allow bucks to grow a little. And it should result in better bucks in the woods for hunters. It should also improve the buck to doe ratio... A five-year study showed that antler regulations protect one and a half year old bucks...

South Florida Deer Research Project Quarterly Update:  July – September 2015 [PDF] October 15, 2015 myfwc.com
... The 5 female deer mortalities are categorized as follows: 1 black bear predation event, 3 panther predation events and 1 suspected disease. The 6 male deer mortalities were categorized as 3 panther predation events, 2 suspected disease and 1 unknown... 

A Shifting Approach to Saving Endangered Species October 5, 2015 Florida, New York Times
... The key deer may be one such example. With its migration routes blocked by development and its habitat shrinking, the deer have already suffered the effects of illegal dumping and open pit mining. Many have been killed by car and truck traffic, and attacked by feral dogs. The federal recovery plan calls for them to stay in the Florida Keys. But with rising sea level and the incursion of saltwater ... chances for the deer’s continued survival in its original habitat may be slim...

FWC’s Hunting Hot Sheet … September 26, 2015 Florida, Foster Folly News
... deer management units (DMUs) have been established throughout the state, each with its own set of antler regulations and antlerless deer harvest days. The new antler regulations will protect most 1.5-year-old bucks, while allowing hunters to harvest bucks that are 2.5 years old and older, a goal hunters supported in recent surveys...

Mediterra, Naples community upset by deer killing September 20, 2015 Florida, NBC2 News
... "Our beloved animals have vanished," said Linda Bobris, a resident of Mediterra ... they didn't even get a heads up about the hunt... Mediterra tried to approve deer hunting a few years back, but an outcry from residents shut the idea down...

Was deer hunt held in Naples community legal? People who live in an upscale neighborhood that borders Lee and Collier counties want to know who killed deer on the 1,700-acre preserve and who authorized it. - September 21, 2015



... Mediterra residents learned earlier this month that property managers had taken to culling the deer population in the community, saying they have become a nuisance in such high numbers. It's a practice that shocked animal lovers who chose the community for its scenery and wildlife...

Florida among least likely states for deer crash September 15, 2015 WJXT Jacksonville
... the odds Florida drivers will have a claim from hitting one of those animals is 1 in 930, placing Florida (ranked 46th) in the top five least likely states for deer collisions...

FWC Needs YOUR Input! September 8, 2015 Florida, FWC News
     The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is seeking public comments on proposed rule changes for hunting and Wildlife Management Areas.  Please click the link below to be directed to a survey to view the proposed rules and provide your feedback:
www.surveymonkey.com/r/Rule_Proposals_2016-17

Homework For Florida Deer Hunters September 5, 2015 Florida Sportsman
...  three subspecies of whitetails here: The Florida coastal whitetail is found primarily in the Florida Panhandle, the Florida whitetail ranges throughout the peninsula, and the Florida Key deer is limited to Big Pine Key... Today, most private land that’s good for hunting is tied up either in hunting leases or in hunt clubs ...

Florida Deer Forecast for 2015 September 1, 2015 Game & Fish
... l favorable rainfall in the winter and early spring, which is good for the deer population in the state... What we’ve seen over time is that more and more hunters have requested that we change that to where there’s some consideration of antlerless or doe harvest, combined with protecting more young bucks so that there are more bucks in the population ...

Florida launches new deer hunt program August 27, 2015 Florida Today
... Biologists hope hunters see a noticeable increase in whitetail deer populations within five years under the plan ... Eight of the units will require antlers of at least three points on one side ... In the remaining four units, the requirement is a minimum of two points on one side...

Controversy over new Sarasota County Hunting law August 25, 2015 Florida, wfla.com
... Throughout Sarasota county, large stretches of pristine land has been set aside. Teeming with wildlife, it’s meant to preserve the local ecosystem. But on Monday night, Sarasota County Commissioners voted to set aside some land for hunting...

Keep eye out for illegal saw palmetto berry harvests August 22, 2015 Florida, The News-Press
... The berries are a critical food source of several native Florida species, including black bear and deer, and are essential to the ecosystem...

Key Deer on Big Pine Key and some fun facts... Don't feed the deer, and drive slowly on Big Pine. - August 22, 2015


Hunting In State Parks Not A New Idea; What You Can Do August 9, 2015 Florida, The Ledger
... The idea of turning state parks into wildlife management areas appears to be off the table for now... The majority of public lands in most parts of Florida are already open to hunting.  Locally, about four out of every five acres of public conservation land in and around Polk County allows hunting ...

     The Florida legislature recently allocated $2 million a year for the University of Florida’s Institute of Food & Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) to study hemorrhagic disease ... Florida has nearly 400 deer farms and hunting preserves ... Hemorrhagic disease is transmitted by insects, most often a biting midge, also known as a no-see-um. Typically, outbreaks occur in late summer to early fall ...

Florida data: An estimated 700,000 or more white-tailed deer in 2011 through 2015.  A stable population.   Deer harvest peaked in 2008-09 at almost 180,000 up from about 60,000 in 1998-99.  The Florida deer population is growing more slowly than in neighboring states.  Some antlerless deer restrictions for areas A1, A2, and A3 for 2015 are designed to grow the herd.
     Approximately 137,000 deer hunters in the state taking about 20 percent of the herd each year.   Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) has recently done a particularly thorough job in collecting and documenting recent hunting statistics, annual reports are available on the FWC site.  A study of deer populations in 2009 [PDF] including deer from the northwest and southwest regions shows a balanced buck to doe ratio of close to 50:50 with fawning rates of 41% singles, 57% twins, 2% triplets. [Click on harvest data graph to enlarge]
    Deer were numerous in the Florida Panhandle based on reports from the late 1600's, but commercial hunting for deer hides resulted in the first hunting regulations, a ban on fire hunting west of the Suwanee River in 1828.  Development in Florida opened up much of the state beginning in the late 1800's.  Over hunting decimated the population with the historic low population in the 1930's of about 20,000.  The legislature authorized participation in the Federal Aid to Wildlife program in 1941, beginning an era of deer conservation.  By 1951, the deer herd had grown to around 45,000 to 50,000.  By 1985, the annual deer harvest rose to over 100,000 for the first time, marking the beginning of the modern era of deer management.  See FWC History of Deer Management.  According to a recent survey, 70 to 75 percent of hunters in North Florida support antler restrictions.
    Three subspecies of deer in Florida:  coastal whitetail in the Panhandle, Florida whitetail throughout the peninsula, and a small population of protected Key deer in Big Pine Key.  Only 25 to 50 Key deer left by 1950 after hunting. About 250 in the early 1980s, estimated at about 600 in 2011 through 2014 after 30 years of protection.  Most recent estimates at 900 to 1,000.
   Florida Panther population in 2016 estimated at 100 to 180, 2014 estimate from 120 to 180, up from 30 in 1995, the start of a restoration program.   Around the year 1900, about 1300 panthers.
    Bear population in 2016 estimated at 4,350 adults, up from 300 to 500 in the 1970's.

Report poaching: Wildlife Alert Line at 1-888-404-FWCC 
- Hunt Florida, FWC's Hunting Information FaceBook Page

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Deer Management: (1) ensure the existence of robust deer populations that meet the public's desire for recreational opportunities and protection of private property while ensuring the long-term welfare of the species, (2) ensure a high degree of public satisfaction with deer management in Florida, and (3) manage deer habitats consistent with ecosystems health, deer population goals, and customer satisfaction goals. From: Strategic Plan for Deer Management in Florida 2008-2018.