Deer Management

A new state management plan could lead to deer numbers being thinned in some areas of Georgia. Local hunters feel state wildlife officials should consider some potential solutions.

As state wildlife officials see the number of deer-vehicle collisions steadily increase, they are now looking for new ways to manage the size of Georgia's deer herd.

Local hunters feel alternative methods of hunting and longer hunting seasons could curb the number of vehicle collisions with deer.

Clint Carlton, a hunter, says, "A lot of your areas in the metro counties don't allow rifle hunting. If they would go to an extended archery of primitive weapons season in these other counties that don't allow firearm use, I think they would see a big reduction in car-deer collisions."

Wildlife officials will hold public hearings to listen to any potential solutions. Local hunters say since the deer population varied throughout the state that state officials really should look at creating a county-by-county management plan.

Carlton adds, "The deer collisions are becoming terrible in a lot of northern counties, you don't see much of it here, so it bothers me that they're going statewide with the increase in bag limits in area that do not have a deer population that the metro and northern counties have."

Local hunters say increasing the hunting season by 30 days would give them more time to help control deer overpopulation. Department of Natural Resources planners hope to have a proposed plan ready by next January.