Southampton Village is not unique when tasked with how to deal with wildlife issues. The continued expansion of white-tailed deer numbers has caused many municipalities on Long Island, even those in Nassau County, to work with experts and biologists to consider their options on how to best protect their residents, properties, other animal species and the public health and safety aspects associated with the final approach adopted in balancing the conflicts.
The NYSDEC has adopted their Management Plan for White-Tailed Deer
in New York State, 2021–2030 which has been "accomplished through scientifically sound management of wildlife species in a manner that is efficient, clearly described, consistent with law, and in harmony with public need." This plan has evolved dramatically over the past 10 years and continues to recognize all stakeholders interests in white-tailed deer management. The 2021-2030 deer Management plan is also clear that the only proven method to reduce deer numbers in areas struggling to cope with the public health concerns, tick borne illness, devastation of indigenous and ornamental plant species and increases of vehicle accidents with these animals is through management style hunting.
Being that Southampton Village encompassing a total of 6.5 square miles of accessible landscape coupled with a vibrant Main Street and suburban homes, bowhunting has been considered and approved by the Village Mayor and Trustees to target deer rich areas in the village during the regular hunting season. Southampton Village has established a comprehensive Deer Management Program in cooperation with Suffolk County Deer Management (SCDM).
SCDM has been managing deer populations in sensitive environments since 2013 and other municipalities have adopted and implemented their program due to its success. SCDM is the only Deer Management company in the country who specializes in suburban deer management and put their hunters through their "SCDM Bowhunting Hunting in Sensitive Environments Course" and performs proficiency and criminal background checks on their volunteer hunters. The decision to choose bowhunting, as opposes to other methods, was due to it having zero second part incidents in Suffolk County and its efficacy in area with discharge setback restrictions.
Southampton Village's Deer Management Program can only be successful with the support of the community. There will be no hunting on properties where the owner does not support such an effort. Access is key when developing a program like this and property owners can support the effort by allowing hunting on their properties or by allowing access for recovery and for the bowhunters to be within the discharge setbacks. All of the bowhunting is discrete and perform from an elevated position to maintain safety protocols and providing for a safe discharge backstop.
SCDM has been successful in areas like Remsenburg, Lloyd Harbor and Belle Terre with delivering an accountable deer management solution. If you have any questions about the Southampton Deer Management Program please call Michael Tessitore of Suffolk County Deer Management at 631-445-7568 to discuss further.
Property owners looking to support or participate in the Southampton Village Deer Management program can click link below.