Deer Management

The Town of Ithaca established a deer management program in 2019 to engage in deer population control by culling deer living within the Town of Ithaca boundary.  This program, once fully implemented, is designed to initially reduce the size of the deer population over the first few years, and then provide stability in population numbers thereafter.  The Town program has received a Deer Damage Permit from the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation to use volunteer archers (firearms could also be used at select sites in the rural areas of the Town) at baited locations. Locations for the bait sites will be scattered throughout the Town, and could include residential properties, cemeteries, and natural areas.  All healthy deer culled will be consumed by the participants, landowners, or donated.

The existing overpopulation of deer are creating a significant ecological impact (deer forage of native vegetation, little forest regeneration), health and human safety issues (ticks / Lyme disease), agricultural losses (crop damage, diseases and parasites transmitted to animals), and vehicle/deer collisions.

2024 Program Information:

Additional Resources:

– Deer Management: Recommended Actions for the Town of Ithaca (May 2017)

Deer Overabundance – NYSDEC

– Community Deer Management Guide, NYSDEC (2018)

– Community Deer Advisor – Decision Support for communities managing deer