It is nice to see the audubon society run a story like this, since their conservation stance sometimes gets mistaken for an anti-hunting stance.
It actually seems to happen to much where if you say your a conservationist people assume that you are against hunting.
These out of control white tail herds are a perfect example of where conservation does not necessarily mean no hunting. In fact, lack of hunting is destroying the desire to conserve habitat for (i'm guessing) non-hunted bird species.
Contraceptives for deer!! Give me a break, I can understand trap and transfer in some situations, but birth control for bambi?
I'm not against more land for hunting, but in this case it sounds like they just need more hunters to knock down the whitetail population. Throwing more land at the problem without more hunting (by any predator) probably won't solve the problem in and of itself.
Any species will reproduce and expand its population until environmental factors limit population growth and a balance is achieved. One need only look in the mirror to see this. Look how the population has grown as humanity reduced factors limiting population growth -- such things as famine, disease, etc. How long do you think the population inside the area of LA would remain sustainable if external support systems were removed and only natural support was available?
Double the land available, and you'll get short-term relief. But the deer population will just explode until constrained, whether through predation, disease, or famine.
I'm sure LA would survive just fine with those smart Hollywood types in town. They just seem to know so much, always popping up to give their enlightened opinion on any national issue! Ok... that was off topic....
Back to the topic. There appears to be a new article linked off the page linked. I don't remember it being there in the past, but this has been awhile. The new article
There are some interesting tid bits buried in this one:
- Contraceptive treatment of deer costs $1000 for 2 years of treatment. To me that effectively kills the whole idea. If a doe is fertile for 6 years that is an incredible $3000 for the lifetime of the doe.
- This stunning quote:
[A] Rutgers University poll found in January that half of New Jersey residents believed an animal's life to be "as sacred as a human being's."
Huh? Does that mean that cat killers should be tried for capital crime? If a cat is the moral equivalent of a human then there should be no distinction in crimes committed against beast, according to that statement. Absurd.... the poll has got to be inaccurate....
I'm not saying an animals life isn't important and is not sacred, but putting it on the same level as a human has many ramifications, many of which don't make sense.
[ This Message was edited by: bitmasher on 2003-05-01 00:03 ]
At the risk of taking things further off topic, PETA has been screaming at Philadelphia not to implode Veteran's Stadium because there's feral cats living in there. They figure the number is down to "18-24" now, and "rescue efforts" are planned before the stadium comes down.
According to the article, "Each year, Pennsylvania's 1.6 million deer destroy $70 million dollars worth of crops and $75 million dollars worth of trees. Then to make matters worse, 40,000 of them run kamikaze into motor vehicles annually, doing another $80 million dollars worth of damage to roadside drivers pocket books..."
Doing the simple math, give or take a few million dollars, Pennsylvania's whopping deer charge is somewhere in the ballpark of $225 million!!!
Now I'm not a bright man... But can tell you that deer birth control is an idiotic idea and the group spending money on this type of research should be executed in a very painful manner!!
Alright, now let me get back to my simple addition. I've pondered the idea surrounding the top charting bill of $225 million dollars, and being a huge fan of simple logic, here's what Penn should do....
Assuming on average, a bullet cost about $1 dollar, and in the hands of a well cultured hunter with a couple of years experience, that individual can take down 1 deer!!
So logic tells us, to abort the idea of deer contraception, and opt for the bullet. It will be a quick and efficient process of lowering a $225 million dollar burden with probably 1/8 of the cost and could feed thousands of needy people with a warm, heathy, tender meal, of venison...
All this addition has made me hungry...
Never take life to seriously... You'll never get out alive!!
[ This Message was edited by: Quicksilver on 2003-05-08 13:31 ]
Good point Quicksilver, the only thing I would add is that by using deer contraception you take the $225,000,000 of existing deer damage costs and add to it $3000 per doe innoculated. A innoculated doe population of 100,000 does per year would add $300 million to the tab, not unreasonable in state like PA.
Then because you are removing deer hunting from the regions where you are opting for contraceptive control, you are also removing a wildlife management revenue stream (license sales). So the tax payer picks up not only the contraceptive costs, but the costs of other game management that was historically paid for with license revenue.
In South Africa when the impala population gets out of hand the process of culling is initiated.A specified no. of animals are shot regardless of bucks or does and at the same time a lot of money is made by the wildlife dept. by selling permits to hunters or others i.e. one can shoot lots of animals for the price of one.I was made this offer by my PH when i was there last.Can this process not be started in America to solve the problem of overpopulation?
I could see the small band of mule deer picking their way towards me through the sagebrush 800 plus yards away. With my 10 power binoculars I spotted a legal buck bringing up the tail. I dropped down and crouched behind a large chunk of sage just waiting for them to pass within range. Unfortunately, they stopped and began milling around before finally settling down, with a few of them laying down right out in the open. They were not going to come to me; if I wanted any closer, I'd...