Bow hunters sought to help with Miami University deer population

OXFORD — Bow hunting to help control the deer population in the Miami University Natural Areas and Ecology Research Center will begin in late fall. There has been planning and study to prepare for this, officials said.

No hunting is allowed near the most popular trails and all deer stands will be away from trails and property boundaries. Signs will be posted at trailheads near hunting areas, officials said.

Hunting is limited to tree stands in designated areas only and begins Nov. 15. It concludes Feb. 5, 2023.

Those interested in hunting must have a hunting license and apply by emailing naturalareas@miamioh.edu or going online to https://miamioh.edu/student-life/natural-areas/management/deer-management. Hunters are selected through random drawing before Sept. 30.

Officials said the goal is to address effects of an overabundance of white-tailed deer on the forestry.

“It is well documented nationwide that excessive deer browsing — consumption of twigs, leaves and young trees — severely limits the ability of a forest to regenerate,” Miami’s deer management group states. “When large trees die, smaller trees usually take their place in the canopy, but because of deer browsing on saplings there are fewer young trees to fill in the canopy. Because deer are selective in the browsing, elevated populations can damage or eliminate plant species, which then negatively impacts the diversity and abundance of animal species and, ultimately, how the forest functions.”

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