Deer Hunters, Get Ready

BY  |  Monday, Jan 10, 2011 9:20am  |  COMMENTS (9)

Barstaville sharp-shooters can start readying their hunting gear for the fourth annual Essex County deer hunt, which begins on Tuesday, January 18. This year’s season will take place over a six-week period, on Tuesdays and Thursdays until February 24th.

This will be the fourth consecutive year the program will be held in the South Mountain Reservation and the second consecutive year it will be held in Eagle Rock and Hilltop Reservations.

County Executive Joe DiVincenzo will be rolling out details later today on safety precautions and other steps being taken to preserve and restore the forest ecology in Essex County’s open spaces as well as enhance safety on the county roads.

According to the county web site, the three reservations will be closed to the public on the days the Deer Management Program is being conducted, to maximize safety.

County Executive Joe DiVincenzo said in a previous press conference, that while the hunt is a very controversial and emotional issue, reducing the number of deer is part of an ongoing initiative by the administration to preserve and restore the forest ecology in Essex County’s open spaces.

“It is a necessary step if we are going to preserve the forest habitat and maintain our reservations as viable resources for recreation and open space,” DiVincenzo said. “Over the last three years, we have removed 750 deer from our reservations, started a program to accelerate the growth of our forests and expanded a pilot program to reduce traffic accidents involving deer. The over abundance of deer affects all of our communities, and our program provides a comprehensive approach to address the problem.”

DiVincenzo noted that the program is beginning to yield positive results and that the county has updated their program to adapt to the changing conditions in each reservation.

For more information, click here.

Photo from Wikipedia.


  1. POSTED BY PAZ  |  January 10, 2011 @ 9:35 am

    How big is the reservation? How far can a errant shot from a deer rifle carry? I’m afraid to drive up eagle rock during hunting season.
    PAZ in EWR

  2. POSTED BY deadeye  |  January 10, 2011 @ 10:40 am

    PAZ, I’m not a hunter but I believe that it is a law in NJ that high powered rifles (.30-06, 30-30) cannot be used because of their range, population density, etc. Hunters need to use shotguns with heavy loads like 00 buckshot that don’t have near the range nor accuracy of a traditional deer rifle, and necessitate that the hunter to be much closer to the target. That said, I don’t know if this applies to the “sharpshooters.” We had a friend in Maine that had bullet go right through both rear windows of his car during deer season while he was driving. Personally I would avoid the area, or at least get one of those day-glo hats.

  3. POSTED BY Conan  |  January 10, 2011 @ 11:14 am

    According to the rules and regulations, they don’t seem to specify what weapons will be used; they are shooting from blinds in the trees at short range, and at a downward angle:

    “Qualified, volunteer marksmen will be selected to participate as agents in the program. The volunteers are licensed by the State of New Jersey and must demonstrate their marksmanship ability and complete an orientation program with the Essex County Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs and the Essex County Sheriff’s Office. When in the reservations, the agents will station themselves in trees at least 20 feet above the ground and only take shots at a downward angle.”

    Shotguns with slugs will usually drop a deer wherever you hit it, but if you are using buckshot — even 00 shot — you have to be very accurate or you will just wound the animal. I am just curious about which part of the training has to do with Cultural Affairs. Perhaps the gala banquet after the hunt?

  4. POSTED BY herbeverschmel  |  January 10, 2011 @ 11:57 am

    I like seeing an occasional deer as much as the next person but in my neighborhood they have become a nuisance. People that don’t have to put up with them will argue that they were here first and we have taken away their natural habitat through development, I can respect their argument. But when you have to deal with them day in and day out its a different story. Shrubs are destroyed along with anything else you attempt to plant. The Boston Ivy that once so beautifully graced my yard that also was vital to absorbing rain water have been reduced to ugly vines. But the worst part is walking the yard to clean up the feces before I can let my kids out to play. If you look out in my yard today you can see black pellets all over the white snow and besides being unsightly its a health hazard. We removed their natural predators in the wolf and coyote (they are returning somewhat)so something needs to be done to control the exploding population.I hope this years cull is a huge success.

  5. POSTED BY deadeye  |  January 10, 2011 @ 4:17 pm

    Right about now we should be expecting a post from Mathilda.

  6. POSTED BY tommysalami  |  January 10, 2011 @ 4:17 pm

    I think deer are beautiful animals, but this hunt must go on. If you hike off-trail anywhere in those reservations, you find voluminous amounts of deer droppings, and the explosion in Lyme disease is due to their overpopulation.
    Hopefully the carcasses will be used to feed the hungry, as it is a lean and free-range meat. I wish I had time to hunt.

  7. POSTED BY DagT  |  January 10, 2011 @ 4:22 pm

    Duck Bambi!!

  8. POSTED BY mathilda1  |  January 10, 2011 @ 8:27 pm

    The irony is as plain as the nose on this deer’s face. The community lets out a collective gasp of horror at the shooting of an elected representative in cold blood, and yet ignores the crosshairs in its very own backyard. Who gave you humans the right to hold the life of your fellow Homo sapiens in Arizona in higher esteem than the deer of South Mountain Reservation? How can you rail against lunatic assassins and yet assassinate these poor creatures in your own backyard?

    If the goal is truly to restore the ecology of the area, the first order of business would be to cull the human population. Any volunteers?

  9. POSTED BY Hildy Fox  |  January 10, 2011 @ 10:35 pm

    What a callous thing to say, mathilda, and in poor taste, if you ask me.

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