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Ancient Deer Management

Research and Information Related to How Deer Populations Have Been Managed Over Thousands of Years
Even in 1542, Southern California's air quality was in question August 22, 2015 The San Luis Obispo Tribune
... During the 19th century, many recent arrivals from the East and Midwest thought the fires were deliberately started by Native Americans to facilitate their killing of wild game ...  historical documents, indicate that Native Americans employed extensive burning of chaparral and shrub lands as a means of land management. They sought to turn the former into native grasslands to promote the proliferation of deer, antelope and small game...

... For centuries, the Karuk tribe has nudged this interlocking ecosystem toward producing these beneficial plants through practices known as agroforestry... we cultivate them with fire ... Fire clears oak groves of encroaching conifers and kills the weevils that ruin acorns. It renews the meadow grasses for grazing deer and elk...

Wildlife Encounters by Lewis and Clark: A Spatial Analysis of Interactions between Native Americans and Wildlife   Andrea S. Laliberte  William J. Ripple  BioScience, Volume 53, Issue 10, 1 October 2003, Pages 994–1003,
... Native people used fire, modified vegetation, and influenced animal populations, with the result that North America was not a pristine wilderness (White and Cronon 1998)... 

Setting Fires and Restoring an American Landscape April 23, 2018 Illinois, New York Times
... For thousands of years, indigenous Americans ignited the landscape. Fire, they knew, brought bison and deer to hunt, and berries and tubers to harvest.  European colonizers took these strategies and practiced them for centuries — but things changed in the early 20th century... The United States Forest Service started the Smokey Bear campaign, which portrayed all fire as destructive...

Climate change stokes fiery future for California September 17, 2018 Santa Rosa Press Democrat
... fire shaped the drought-prone landscape for thousands of years, as Native Americans used it to maintain meadows and forests that provided deer, elk and acorns for food as well as grasses for basketry...
Earliest isotopic evidence in the Maya region for animal management and long-distance trade at the site of Ceibal, Guatemala  AE Sharpe, KF Emery, T Inomata, D Triadan… - Proceedings of the National …, 2018
...   Thornton (31) found evidence of occasional nonlocal deer and peccaries at Maya sites in Guatemala and Belize, indicating that such animals were exchanged during the Classic and Postclassic periods ... 

Tribes used fire to maintain area's habitat October 17, 2018 Oregon, Ashland Daily Tidings
... could see where the meadow had been but pines and brush had grown over the meadow through the years... a place where indigenous peoples would come on a seasonal basis to gather camas and tarweed and go elk and deer hunting. They used fire to maintain it, to create the ideal habitat... [Southern Oregon University Laboratory of Anthropology]

Can more fires create less smoke? October 15, 2018 Oregon, The Edwardsville Intelligencer
... Tribes in the Pacific Northwest have used fire as a tool to shape the landscape for thousands of years. The touch of flame kept huckleberry and camas fields abundant. In areas where tribes hunted deer and elk, fire created a mat of forage plants on the forest floor, a favorite food for the ungulates. Burned areas recycle nutrients more efficiently and help to control the spread of invasive species...

South Carolina DNR Official Sees Smokey Bear as Threat to Prescribed Burns March 23, 2016 Firefighter Nation 
... The use of prescribed fire as a land management tool has deep and ancient roots in South Carolina's heritage... Prescribed fires help restore and maintain vital habitat for wildlife, including bobwhite quail and other grassland birds, wild turkeys, white-tailed deer, gopher tortoises and red-cockaded woodpeckers...

Native Peoples' Relationship to the California Chaparral  MK Anderson, JE Keeley - Valuing Chaparral, 2018
... many tribes of California  ... natural fires with deliberate burning of chaparral to maximize its ability to produce useful products... Areas were burned in ways designed to create a mosaic of open grassland and recently burned, young and mature stands of chaparral with different combinations of species and densities. This management conferred on chaparral plant communities a degree of spatial, structural, successional, and biotic diversity that exceeded what would have been the case in the absence of human intervention...  [the article contains many references to research about how this helped improve the deer herd] ...