Deer Management Series

An Assessment of the Pennsylvania Game Commission's
Deer-Reduction Program

By John Eveland

Forester, Wildlife Biologist, and Ecologist

November 2014

In 2000-01, John Eveland was asked by the senate majority leader to assess PGC's deer-reduction program, and again was requested by the Office of the Governor and the majority leader of the House Game and Fisheries Committee in 2007. In 2010, members of PGC's Board of Commissioners asked Eveland to prepare a new deer management plan for them in the event that they could muster a majority of votes to halt the deer-reduction program.

From Eveland's investigations, there are two over-riding conclusions: (1) that no significant benefits have resulted after 14 years of herd reduction—not for science, society, nor economy—while the negative impacts to the future of sport hunting and the Commonwealth have been great; and (2) that PGC's deer-reduction program is designed to serve foresters and fringe environmentalists at the expense of sportsmen and recreational hunting, and as such is in violation of PGC's legislated mission and state law. Therefore, there is no reason that PGC's deer-reduction program should have been initiated in 2000 or continued to the present, and there are overwhelming reasons for the program to be immediately ended.


Following is a series of 25 one-page articles that are intended to provide readers with a comprehensive assessment of PGC's unprecedented action. This Deer Management Series will leave no doubt that deer reduction was a politically-motivated agenda, concocted by only three people that has cost the Commonwealth billions in lost dollars and that remains unjustified on every front--science, society, economy, legality, public relations, and even common sense.


In addition to the complete DMS series (which appears below in its entirety), other reports and original documents regarding the deer-reduction program along with a detailed resolution plan are available at www.acsl-pa.org. John Eveland can be reached at 412.601.0077, or at jfeveland@acsl-pa.org.

 

DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 1:

OVERVIEW OF THE PENNSYLVANIA GAME

COMMISSION'S DEER REDUCTION PROGRAM

By John Eveland

April 25, 2014

1. A few state employees have changed the mission of the PGC to fit their personal agenda.   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 2:

GREEN CERTIFICATION
The Real Cause of the Deer-Reduction Progra
m
By John Eveland
May 5, 2014

In 1993, the Rainforest Alliance founded the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in Bonn, Germany.  Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 3: BETRAYING A TRUST
Deceiving Sportsmen and Legislators into Believing Deer Reduction

was in Their Best Interest

By John Eveland
May 20, 2014

By 1999, the Game Commission had complied with DCNR's request to permanently reduce the deer herd.     Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 4: A PERFECT STORM
PGC and DCNR Designed a Doomsday

Scenario to Virtually Exterminate Deer
By John Eveland
May 31, 2014

From 2000-04, PGC engaged in a relentless assault on does and fawns. Three deer-reduction mechanisms were deployed: (1) extremely high antlerless license allocations, (2) predation, and (3) antler restrictions.   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 5: BLOOD IN THE WATER

Sensing the Reality of Deer Reduction, Foresters and Environmentalists

Circled like Sharks around a Sinking Ship

By John Eveland
June 17, 2014

Before DCNR "purchased" its first Green Certification Award in 1998 from the German-based Forest Stewardship Council, FSC's auditor (Mr. Bryon Shissler).....   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 6: STACKING THE DECK
PGC Hired Three Deer Biologists who were all Trained at Chesapeake

Farms to Eliminate Deer Impacts by Eliminating Deer

By John Eveland
June 18, 2014

Historically, foresters and environmentalists have long sought to dramatically reduce Pennsylvania's state mammal.   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 7: CONCEALING A MISTAKE

Three After-the-Fact Goals were Concocted

in an Attempt to Justify Herd Reduction
By John Eveland
July 7, 2014

Once PGC's Calvin DuBrock had hired the three Chesapeake Farms students as deer managers to continue the Commission's deer-reduction policy,      Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 8: AUDUBON'S ROLE
Audubon Played a Key Role in Reducing Deer

toward Promoting Ecosystem Management

By John Eveland
July 12, 2014

In 1996, acting as a representative of the German-based Forest Stewardship Council (FSC),   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 9: DCNR'S PERSPECTIVE
DCNR Developed a Deer Management Plan that

Supported Forestry and Audubon Goals

By John Eveland
July 14, 2014

Quoting from a private forestry company publication: "Hunting is the best way to curb unrestrained growth of white-tailed deer...   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 10: DESTROYING A TRADITION
By the Numbers – How PGC Decimated Pennsylvania's State Mammal

By John Eveland
August 19, 2014

Prior to Herd Reduction. During the 14-year period from 1986-99, the average deer harvest was estimated to be 379,137 deer per year. The statewide population was estimated to be 1.5 million deer.   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 11:

A FALSE PREMISE  Deer Reduction Resulted from

Politics and an Emotional Environmental Belief

John Eveland
August 25, 2014

Beginning with the first 1998 Green Certification Award agreement between the German-based Forest Stewardship Council and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources,     Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 12:

THE DEER HEALTH FALLACY   Science Indicates that Deer Reduction

was not Justified on the Basis of Deer Health

John Eveland
August 26, 2014

There are two critical questions that need to be addressed regarding the deer-reduction crisis.   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 13:

THE FOREST HEATH FALLACY    Science Indicates that Deer

Reduction was not Justified on the Basis of Forest Health

By John Eveland

August 30, 2014


The Pennsylvania Game Commission has attempted to justify its deer reduction program on three issues – to improve deer health, forest health, and biodiversity.     Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 14:

THE BIODIVERSITY FALLACY Science Indicates that Deer

Reduction was not Justified on the Basis of Biodiversity

By John Eveland

August 31, 2014


From a 2012 news release: "Say so long to the California Department of Fish and Game and hello to the state Department of Fish and Wildlife....    Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 15:

A SOCIOECONOMIC DISASTER State Study:

Green Certification and Deer Reduction are Economic Boondoggles


In November 2012, the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee (a Joint Committee of the Pennsylvania General Assembly) released a report on the costs and benefits of a "green" ....   Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 16:

THE SCIENCE MISCONCEPTION

John Eveland
September 23, 2014

As has been documented within this Deer Management Series, the plan for the Game Commission's deer-reduction program was initially concocted in 1998 in order to assist DCNR in achieving a green certification forestry award.   Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 17:

FLAWED HARVEST CLAIMS About 50 deer per square mile

would be needed to sustain PGC's high harvest claims

by John Eveland
October 17, 2014

Since 2010, the author has scientifically assessed the Pennsylvania Game Commission's annual deer harvest estimates....      Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 18:

IGNORING HUNTER INTERESTS
John Eveland
October 13, 2014

Prior to his release from the Pennsylvania Game Commission,....    Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 19:

VIOLATION OF STATE LAW
John Eveland
October 17, 2014

Title 34, Section 322(c)(13) of the Game and Wildlife Code lists the specific duties of the commission:

Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 20:

PROPOSED RESOLUTION PLAN
In 2010, Members of PGC's Board Requested a New Deer-Management Plan
John Eveland
October 19, 2014

During the past century, the Pennsylvania Game Commission has been a vital agency regarding the conservation...

Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 21:

PROPOSED LEGISLATION
In 2014, the PA Legislature Attempted to Resolve the Deer-Management Crisis
John Eveland
October 22, 2014

As described in the previous Deer Management Series, No. 20: Proposed Resolution Plan,...  Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 22:

A PERMANENT SOLUTION
John Eveland
October 27, 2014

As has been described in previous Deer Management Series articles,....    Read more

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 23:

SUMMARY OF A TRAVESTY
John Eveland
November 1, 2014

For decades prior to 2000, Pennsylvania was recognized as one of the top deer-hunting states in the nation...

Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 24:

ON A PERSONAL NOTE
John Eveland
November 4, 2014

In 2000-01, I was asked by the senate majority leader to assess PGC's deer-reduction program,...  Read More

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DEER MANAGEMENT SERIES, NO. 25:

END OF A FAMILY TRADITION
John Eveland
November 7, 2014

This last installment of the Deer Management Series is intended to represent Pennsylvania sportsmen with a story that is all too common for us Pennsylvania hunters – a personal deer-hunting account.    Read More

 

 

 

 

 

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