MENTOR’S #DEER POPULATION: MARYLAND’S LIMITED EXPERIMENT WITH DEER BIRTH CONTROL

From the Washington Post, May 15, 2011

Paul Peditto, director of the Maryland Wildlife and Heritage Service, says he can’t imagine that Gonacon, a deer birth control product, will ever be used in what he termed the open landscape.

“This is the only immuno-contraceptive for deer that has federal approval. . . .  We feel good about being the first jurisdiction to approve its use.  It shows we have an open mind, but is not a magic bullet for deer control.  It is an option in very limited circumstances and will have virtually no consequence in terms of day-to-day deer management and deer hunting.  It won’t be used in 98 % of the state.”

He cited the high cost, $1000 per deer, and the temporary nature of the treatment as reasons for the program’s limited acceptance.  Unless treated again next year, 50% of the deer treated this year will become pregnant.

You can find the entire article at

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post_now/post/md-approves-use-of-deer-birth-control/2011/05/15/AFF4ND4G_blog.html

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