It’s time to stop Saw Creek cull

I’ve sat quietly on the sideline so far.

I’ve seen small groups form with the help of social media and a cause they deem worth speaking out against. I’ve done my best to understand both sides – those who support the deer cull in Saw Creek Estates and those who oppose it.

Today, there is no doubt in my mind, that the future culling of deer in Saw Creek must be stopped. Enough is enough.

Three culls in four years has decimated the deer population not only in Saw Creek, but the surrounding forests. In three of the last four years, Saw Creek has received permits from the state to cull deer in the early spring. Does, bucks, fawns – as the saying goes, if it’s brown it’s down – over 500 deer. Dead.

Deer have been killed in three of the last four years. Prior to the first cull four years ago in which 300 deer were killed, a statement was released saying does would be targeted. That was a lie. I saw the list of deer killed that year and it included deer of both sexes and all ages.

During this year’s cull which began Feb. 12 and ran through March 27, approximately 125 deer were killed. Of those deer, eight were bucks 31/2 years or older. Several 21/2 year old bucks were killed as well. One hundred and twenty five deer may not sound like much, but when you factor in the year’s prior deer kill – now we have a generation block of deer not reproducing offspring.

I’m no biologist, but I don’t think it takes much to understand that killing hundreds of deer in a specific area over four year’s time will have an impact on the herd in that area. I’m witnessing it first-hand. Neighboring Saw Creek Estates is private property, Saw Creek Hunting Club, and the Delaware State Forest.

All of the neighbors which I have spoken to have witnessed the same thing –  a severe decline in deer. Why?

The common thought is the cull. During the early spring, sharpshooters are luring in deer around Saw Creek with piles of corn. When food is at its minimum for deer survival, deer on surrounding properties are flocking to the corn piles and the awaiting sharpshooters. So while those sharpshooters are killing deer that live in Saw Creek, they’re also killing deer which have traveled searching for food.

And like many animals, once deer find a food source, they’re not going to leave.

I write this not to change the minds of those on the Saw Creek board – they have their own agenda. I have another.

I believe it’s the responsibility of the Pennsylvania Game Commission supplying the culling permits, and those in the Department of Agriculture who oversee the cull, to take a closer look at how surrounding properties are being impacted. It’s not good. In fact, the deer population has been decimated by the cull.

Something must change and it starts with people standing up and saying something with this is not right. Today, I stand with those people because culling deer around Saw Creek Estates is not right and needs to stop.


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