Game, Fish, and Parks recommends harvesting 250 deer to help manage local population
RAPID CITY, S.D. — South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks is recommending 250 deer be harvested within Rapid City for the season starting after the holidays.
Since 1995, Rapid City Parks and Recreation has run the deer management program in an effort to help maintain healthy populations.
The recommended harvesting number comes from this year’s annual deer trend survey. Game, Fish and Parks says the focus is on antler-less deer.
“Game Fish and Parks is very adamant they do not want trophy deer hunting and that sort of thing as part of this program,” Rapid City Parks and Recreation Director Jeff Biegler explained. “That’s part of their normal hunting program. So, it makes sense to take more of the does and have more of an effect on the overall population of deer going forward.”
The program also helps to address and work to mitigate issues residents and their pets may have with the animals.
“We do this to try to reduce the number of deer vehicle accidents, property damage from deer getting into people’s yards and gardens and such,” Biegler said. “Also to reduce the amount of potential aggressive interaction between the animals and humans and pets.”
The proposal goes before the full common council for a vote Monday, December 6.
If agreed to, officials will begin culling the deer population in January. All of the deer will be processed and examined for Chronic Wasting Disease before the meat is collected and donated to Feeding South Dakota.