Florida Deer News
North & Central FL (Zones B & C) Deer Hunters: We Want To Hear From You! April 9, 2014 Florida, Florida Wildlife Commission
View an online presentation and then take a quick survey on our website MyFWC.com/Deer/DMU. This will alow you to learn about the new Deer Management Unit (DMU) process and provide input on deer management in the DMU you are interested in.

...Robbie is a robot deer  ... "I can have the deer facing away from him, and then when they make a noise, I can have that head turn towards that noise ... 

Monticello Hosts Deer Management Meeting April 4, 2014 Florida, WCTV 
...  FWC is asking if residents want more, about the same amount, or less deer. In addition, FWC would also like preferences on antler regulations, antlerless deer, and other important deer-related issues....

Deer Carcasses Found Underneath Abandoned Lynn Haven Business April 3, 2014 Florida, WJHG-TV
... An abandoned Lynn Haven business is under fire for some hazardous animal remains. Clean up crews say they found several deer carcasses, debris, and rats under the former Done-Right Deer Processing facility off Highway 77...

Author Hutto to appear in PBS documentary March 31, 2014 Florida, Tallahassee.com
... “Touching the Wild, Living with the Mule Deer of Deadman Gulch. ” ... A documentary film with the same title premieres April 16 on PBS at 8 p.m ... Joe’s last words in the clip, referring to a specific wild mule deer, are “I was not seeing something, I was seeing someone.” ...

... All participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and share thoughts and opinions on deer management in Zones B and C of North and Central Florida [see articles for locations and times] ... Not able to attend one of the public meetings? You can still participate via webinar ... dates to be announced soon...

Plant in spring to ease stress of late summer March 15, 2014 Florida, Florida Today
...  management practices such as prescribed burning and timber thinning will create a habitat with enough resources to carry the herd until hard mast crops begin to fall ... “Cow peas, purple-hull peas, those summer annual legumes do pretty good,”  ...

Gun Season Over, But Local Deer Hunting Lasts Through March 2 February 24, 2014 Florida, NorthEscambia.com
...  Zone D’s late muzzleloading gun season runs a week longer until March 2... No dogs may be used in the pursuit of deer during this season. However, leashed dogs can be used to track a wounded deer if necessary... allowed to take deer and hogs over feeding stations on private land, but it’s illegal to do that on WMAs...

... Clint Galentine was on a nature walk in Florida this past Sunday when a hunter allegedly mistook him for a deer and shot him twice ... 

FWC modifies some hunting zones; adjusts turkey bag limit on private lands February 12, 2014 Florida, FWC News Release
... Hunters had noted, and recent biological surveys have confirmed, that deer living below the zonal line in the counties of Sarasota, St. Lucie, Martin and Palm Beach have a breeding period that occurs later than that of most of the deer in Hunting Zone A. These deer actually have a breeding period more in line with deer living north of the line in Zone C. The breeding period, also known as “the rut,” is the time of year when bucks actively pursue female deer, which more often leads bucks to venture out during daylight hours, giving hunters a better chance at seeing and harvesting one....

... This unique late season, which occurs only in Zone D, was established to give hunters the chance to hunt the rut, which occurs from mid-January through February in the Panhandle...

Deer Farmers Pleased with Farm Bill February 6, 2014 agwired.com
... The 2014 Farm Bill includes several key victories for NADeFA and the national cervid farming industry, such as: • Deer in USDA’s Research Initiatives: The USDA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiatives (AFRI) program has been amended to include emphasis on disease (EHD, CWD), mapping the genome, pest/parasite, diagnostics and vaccination research for deer, elk and other cervidae.  • Venison Added to Country-of-Origin-Labeling: The Country-of-Origin-Labeling (COOL) program requires fresh meat and produce to be clearly labeled in English as to its origin, allowing the U.S. consumer to know if they are buying a foreign or domestic product. ...

... a doe through the high fence of a deer pen off County Road 251 ... call the Wildlife Alert number at 888-404-3922 to report the crime ...

A large Florida buck freed from entanglement in a fence along the boundary road of the Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge in Chiefland Florida. - January, 2014



... As a result of this outreach process, the FWC is considering rule proposals for both public and private lands in both of the DMUs in Zone D, specifically north and south of Interstate 10. Currently statewide on private lands and most wildlife management areas, bucks that are legal to take must have at least one antler that is at least 5 inches long...

Florida Deer - January 9, 2014


Group forming to better protect deer December 8, 2013 Florida, Florida Keys News 
... Key deer deaths in 2012 were the highest on record since the National Key Deer Refuge managers started formal mortality counts in 1996, according to statistics. Cars are the main killers ... Anyone interested in participating in the workshops may contact Diefenbach at 814-865-4511 or at DRD11@psu.edu...

A mixed case for seasonal gratitude November 28, 2013 Florida, tbo.com 
... By the late 1930s, only 20,000 deer remained in Florida, state wildlife officials estimate... By one estimate, hunters as a group spend $1,500 for each deer harvested... The importance of deer to the early Native Americans is told in the fossil records. Where deer were plentiful, the human population was most dense...

... The FWC conducted a public outreach and input process in northwest Florida ... Currently statewide on private lands and most wildlife management areas, bucks that are legal to take must have at least one antler that is at least 5 inches long...

... Concerns about drowning Florida panthers, deer and other vulnerable Everglades animals prompted state wildlife officials Wednesday to call for new water level limits in western Broward and Miami-Dade counties.... Wildlife officials say prolonged high water in the conservation areas kills deer ...

Proposal Extends Zone C For Deer November 15, 2013 Florida, The Ledger
... The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will discuss the rule proposal when it meets on Wednesday and Thursday in Weston. It would apply to the 2014-15 seasons...

Florida hunter shoots at robotic ‘Bambi,’ faces firearms charge November 13, 2013 Florida, The Miami Herald · 
... Brett Russel Thompson was arrested at 8:30 a.m. Saturday after shooting the robotic Bambi in the neck from the side of a rural road south of Myakka City, according to an arrest report... He faces up to a year in jail and $2,500 in fines if convicted...

Deer hunting season brings big bucks November 8, 2013 Florida, Pensacola News Journal
... “We could eat filet mignon every night and it would still cost less,” said Shane Reeves, a 39-year-old Pace resident whose family plans to spend close to $4,000 in deer hunting expenses this season ... According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, U.S. hunters spent about $350 million in 2011 on big-game hunting expenditures across Florida...

Robot deer helps make arrest in Sarasota County November 5, 2013 Florida, NBC News 
... Sarasota deputies placed a robotic deer on the side of State Road 72 because of the recent incidents of road hunting and made an arrest soon after ...

Large numbers of whitetail deer are hard to figure October 26, 2013 Florida, Florida Times-Union
...“Years ago we thought we knew how many deer the land could support, and biologists offered numbers of whitetails per square mile as a maximum — ‘carrying capacity’ in other words,” explains Illinois deer biologist Paul Shelton. “But in many areas of the U.S. we don’t know what the true ‘biological deer carrying capacity’ of land actually is because whitetail numbers would never be allowed to reach those high figures. Public tolerance – ‘cultural carrying capacity’ — of deer is much lower in than what land can actually support.” ... 

Fear of deer disease leads state to ban imports October 20, 2013 Florida, Ocala
... The ban ... was enacted Sept. 6. The goal is to avoid bringing an infection that causes chronic wasting disease (CWD) into Florida... "While we cannot say with certainty that there is no CWD in Florida, there is no evidence to suggest its presence," ... explained Dr. Thomas Holt, state veterinarian ... Deer farmer Mark Owens of Live Oak said the ban is an unnecessary obstacle to the "free market" ..













Search for news and information by keyword above or find links to state news stories organized by topic.
 
Florida data: An estimated 700,000 or more white-tailed deer in 2011 through 2014, likely.  A small population of Florida Key Deer are protected in the Keys.  There were as few as as 250 in the early 1980s, estimated at about 600 in 2011 through 2014 after 30 years of protection. 
     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.
    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.  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

Report poaching: Wildlife Alert Line at 1-888-404-FWCC 
- Hunt Florida, FWC's Hunting Information FaceBook Page
Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC)
Goal (mission statement): Managing fish and wildlife resources for their long-term well being and the benefit of the people From Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Long Range Program Plan


Fish and Wildlife Commission News




Tweets about deer in Florida


Tweets about Florida Fish and Wildlife



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.

 

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the FWC is seeking public input to assist management practices in each newly formed geographic area. - January 17, 2013