SDA will address deer overabundance on west side of Eagle Creek Park
INDIANAPOLIS- Today the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), working in close coordination with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), announced the beginning of phase two of the Deer Management Program on the west side of Eagle Creek Park.
Activity will begin on January 12th and will take place during hours when the park is closed to the public. These activities will not interrupt normal activities or hours of operation. Eagle Creek Park, including its trail system, closes at dusk.
Phase one of the Deer Management Program conducted in 2014 focused on the east side of the park. Given the extensive damage caused by deer overabundance to the forest understory throughout the park, DPR, in partnership with the Indianapolis Police Department (IMPD), the Indiana State Police, Department of Natural Resources, and A&T Wildlife Management, determined it was necessary to continue this program on the west side of the park.
Safety of park patrons and nearby residents is the program’s top priority. Park Rangers and IMPD will secure a perimeter to ensure that activities are proceeding as planned. The equipment and techniques used by USDA Wildlife Services are all selected to allow for safe, humane and effective operation. USDA will have night vision equipment that will ensure accurate identification of all objects.
Deer will be processed off-site, and the meat will again be donated to the local shelters and food banks. The initial deer program yielded 4,800 pounds of venison, which was donated to local food pantries.
This is the beginning of a long-term plan at Eagle Creek Park. The USDA will provide analysis and further recommendations for long-term deer management plans at Eagle Creek Park later this year.
To learn more about the Deer Management Program, please visit, www.indy.gov/deermanagementprogram