City issues “What Syracuse residents should know about Deer Damage Management” Information Sheet

Deer management conducted by qualified wildlife managers from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) will begin in the City of Syracuse during the week of December 2. Syracuse is one of five municipalities in Onondaga County completing deer damage management with the USDA this winter.

The City is undertaking targeted removal of deer in response to public health and safety concerns. The purpose of the program is to address the impact of deer overpopulation on: deer-vehicle accidents; parks, gardens, and the ecosystem; and public health risks, such as Lyme Disease.

In preparation for beginning the program, the City is issuing a frequently asked question sheet, “What Syracuse residents should know about Deer Damage Management.” The sheet is available at https://ourcity.syrgov.net/2019/12/deer-management-faq/ or by calling the Syracuse Parks Department at (315)473-4330.

Sites meeting strict New York State Department of Environment Conservation (NYSDEC) criteria have been identified on the east, west and south sides of the City.

  • All of the locations are on large private and city-owned properties.
  • Only DEC permitted sites where explicit written permission from the property owners have been provided will be accessed.
  • The sites are required to be at least 500 feet from any occupied dwelling.
  • All sites are either private or closed to public access when work is conducted.

Specially trained USDA wildlife managers will conduct the work only at night, between the hours of dusk to dawn. All sites are closed to public access when work is conducted. No wildlife management officer should be accessing private property without permission. Residents should call 911 if you see suspicious activity on public or private property.

Deer management plans were developed in coordination with the USDA, NYSDEC, Onondaga County Department of the Environmental, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Onondaga County, 5th District Common Councilor Joe Driscoll and the Common Council, as well as the Syracuse Police Department. Work will be conducted through the month of March.

Earlier this year, Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh appointed a Citizens Advisory Group to develop a comprehensive Tick and Deer Management Plan in the City. The program was approved unanimously by the Syracuse Common Council in June.

The integrated plan also includes community education on personal safeguards from tick-borne disease. The City held a workshop on Tick Bite Prevention on Nov. 20. A Spring Tick Bite Prevention program will take place on April 29. Funding for implementation of the Tick and Deer Management Plan in the City is being provided by Onondaga County with support from County Executive J. Ryan McMahon II.

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