Delaware’s 10-year white-tailed Deer Management Plan finalized

by Dave on May 26, 2010

After nearly two years of work – which included stakeholder meetings, public meetings, surveys and extensive field research – the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife (DFW) is pleased to announce that it has completed The Delaware Deer Management Plan: A Guide to How and Why Deer Are Managed in the First State.

“Deer are arguably the most important wildlife species the Division is responsible for managing because they affect so many people. This plan will enable the Division to manage the Delaware deer population in a manner that meets the expectations of the public while also taking into account what the environment can support,” said Joe Rogerson, Deer and Furbearer Biologist.

The Division of Fish & Wildlife has never had a formal deer management plan. The new Delaware Deer Management Plan fills this gap three-fold. The plan first documents the history of white-tailed deer and white-tailed deer management in Delaware. It goes on to describe the current status of white-tailed deer in Delaware, and the positive and negative impacts of the state’s white-tailed deer herd. Finally, the plan documents the Division’s responsibilities related to deer management, outlining the goals and objectives for deer management through 2019.

The new plan is both a strategic and operational plan, using hunting as the primary tool for deer management as well as outlining how hunting seasons are established and amended to keep Delaware’s deer population in check.

“Whether you are a farmer, hunter, outdoor recreationalist, or someone who has experience with deer in roadways, you probably have an interest in how deer are managed in Delaware, which is why we created this document,” Rogerson said. “Though it is difficult to ensure everyone is 100 percent satisfied, we feel the plan will meet the needs and address the concerns of most Delawareans, including farmers, wildlife watchers and hunters.”

Printed copies of the plan will be available in the coming weeks. For now, the full 102-page plan can be found online at

“We recognize that this plan is rather technical and quite long, so we will be working on a summarized version that’s more user-friendly for the public. Those who want more specifics will be able to refer the longer version,” Rogerson added.

For questions concerning the Delaware Deer Management Plan, or any other deer related issue, please contact Joe Rogerson, Wildlife Section, at 302-735-3600.

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