Deer

PA Game Commission

  A communicable brain disease similar to mad cow was detected in south central Pennsylvania wildlife.

The two most recent cases were detected in roadkill found along Bedford County highways in the western portion of Disease Management Area number 2, according to officials with the The Pennsylvania Game Commission. The discovery forced the state to slightly expand the watch area, which already includes portions of Somerset, Cambria, Huntingdon, Bedford and Blair counties. 

Brad Knabel / Flickr

Mt. Lebanon has been trying to reduce its deer population with a controversial program in which deer are baited, trapped into a small area, and then shot. Township officials have said they are trying to reduce the number of incidents involving deer and cars.Tom Fazi, Information and Education Supervisor for the Pennsylvania Game Commission's Southwest Region, says the plan was developed by Mt. Lebanon's community leaders, and that the Commission is there to guide their decision-making.

 

"They met the provisions of the law in all respects. We are duty-bound to offer them the permit. That doesn't mean we'll wash our hands of it. We have the authority to revoke this permit immediately if the provisions aren't met." -Tom Fazi

 

But some members of the community say the deer cull is inhumane and barbaric. Leila Sleiman, a representative of Pittsburgh Animal Rights believes that the process is not being accurately presented to the community. 

 

"From its conception, this plan has not been transparent. It has nothing to do with public safety or how inhumane it is. It's been hurdle after hurdle for [local government], of doing things wrong with public safety not in mind." -Leila Sleiman

 

They were joined by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter John Hayes, who has been covering this issue.

 

Also in the program is a discussion of Hillary Clinton's email account usage, with former U.S. Ambassador Dan Simpson.


Flickr user Cam Miller

Deer culling is set to begin in Mt. Lebanon, as soon as the state Game Commission approves the municipality’s permit application for the trap-and-euthanize method of population control.

But some residents and town commissioners are dissatisfied with the plan, which they say is only a short-term solution to an ongoing problem.

As deer season approaches, hunters in Blair and Bedford counties will have to follow Pennsylvania Game Commission regulations intended to halt the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease.

There are currently three Disease Management Areas (DMAs) in Pennsylvania, two of which are on deer farms in Adams and Jefferson counties. The other, in Blair and Bedford counties, is the biggest concern for the commission because it is in the free-ranging population, said Jeannine Fleegle, wildlife biologist with the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

Don't Feed the Deer! Here's Why...

Oct 9, 2014
Heather McClain / WESA

While it might be tempting to feed the deer that may wander into your surroundings this fall, the Pennsylvania Game Commission advises against this. We’ll find out why from Dr. Justin Brown, a veterinarian with the state Game Commission.

Driving in Pittsburgh is notoriously difficult, and increased deer collisions are only going to make it more difficult for people to avoid crashes, especially as deer activity starts to rise during the fall.

Pennsylvania has climbed the chart for highest projected deer crashes, rising from number five, now to number two, according to the 2014 State Farm Deer Collision Report which predicts the number of crashes that will happen during the fall season.

Not only will hunters be tracking deer in Pennsylvania starting today, so too will researchers.

As part of the Deer Forest Study, conducted by the Game Commission with the help of Penn State researchers, 30 deer are wearing GPS radio collars that are controlled using text messages and instantly record the location of the deer.

Researchers can then learn more deer movements and behavior especially during hunting season.

Get your inner Katniss Everdeen ready.

The Allegheny County Airport Authority is opening up land for archery-only hunting in the coming months.  The pilot program will allow bow hunting in designated zones, but it will be limited to a certain number of hunters.

“There will be an online lottery in mid-to-late September,” said state Sen. Matt Smith. “People can go to the airport authority website right now, put their name in for the lottery and there will be 157 individuals selected.”