Deer Over-Population Issues
Upper Dublin Township is densely populated with deer resulting in various types of property and environmental damage, and, more importantly, injury to the public. The Upper Dublin Township Board of Commissioners (BOC), Administration, and Police Department (UDPD) recognize deer over-population within Upper Dublin Township as a major problem and seek to control it in the most cost effective manner.
Highlight of deer over-population issues that affect the entire Upper Dublin Township Community
- Public Health & Safety
- White-tailed deer serve as a host for the deer tick which is a carrier of the often disabling Lyme Disease.
- Vehicle accidents involving deer have increased over the years and have resulted in vehicles being damaged and, more importantly, the occupants being injured.
- On most occasions when a deer has been struck by a vehicle, it is suffering from severe injuries and the responding officer has to discharge their firearm in order to “put-down” the deer. This type of necessary response by the police presents major safety issues and is avoided when possible.
- Property Damage
- Many of the residents of Upper Dublin Township have experienced deer venturing onto their properties and browsing in their gardens and landscape ornamentals. Damage to residential properties' landscaping is frustrating and expensive.
- The deer over-browsing within the Upper Dublin Township Park system is expansive. New vegetative growth within the park system is unable to take place due to the deer over-browsing. This leads to the loss of native trees and shrubs, which in turn, causes soil erosion and allows invasive plants to take over.
- Police and Other Staff Response Time
- The Upper Dublin Township Police Department has responded to over 1208 calls for service in the past 12 years for deer-related issues. The average amount of time an officer dedicates to this type of call is approximately 30 minutes.
- When the time and costs that it takes for the Public Works and Parks & Recreation Departments to respond to appropriate damages, the problem becomes considerable.
2009 Pilot Program:
In 2009, the Upper Dublin Township Police Department was commissioned by the Upper Dublin Township Board of Commissioners to create and supervise a “Community Managed Deer Hunt.” Chief of Police Terrence Thompson directed Patrol Commander Darren Nyce, then a member of the police department for 15 years and who holds a bachelor’s degree in Wildlife and Fishery Science from the Pennsylvania State University, with this assignment. Patrol Commander Nyce, with assistance from the department’s Professional Standards Officer David Madrak, created the Upper Dublin Township Deer Management Program.