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Postcard from the Past: A Vicious Cycle for Deer Herd

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

by Dick Perue

This week’s Postcard is a repeat from 2011, but is more relevant today than back then.

It was inspired by the great articles in the Special Mule Deer Issue of Wyoming Wildlife – one of the finest publications in the country. The entire September issue should be required reading for every wildlife lover in the country – hunter, non-hunter, observer or illegal feeder.

More than 10 years ago I wrote:

“It’s just a vicious cycle going from too many mule deer to not enough,” a pioneer hunter quipped this week after reading the hometown newspaper, which reported meetings being held in order to determine why the deer herd in Southcentral Wyoming is down, while an article from 50 years ago in Reflections reports there are too many deer.

The headline in the Sept. 28, 1961 Saratoga Sun reads:

Clubs ask Game and Fish to drop 15-day doe season here

The possible depletion of our mule deer population through excessive big game seasons and multiple deer area and season extension was the major topic of two recent meetings here. 

Last Thursday night the Saratoga Lions Club took action on this issue, and Tuesday evening the Platte Valley Game and Fish met in a special session to review the situation.

Both groups felt the proposed 15-day doe season from Nov. 1-15 should be discontinued by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. This decision was reached in light of the recent expansion of the three-deer area to most of the east side of the Upper North Platte River Valley and the extension of a season to Sept. 30. 

Several of the ranchers, guides, hunters and businessmen at both meetings felt the reduction in the local deer population has already been adequate.

The recommendations of the Lions Club and the Platte Valley Game and Fish have been forwarded to the Wyoming Game and Fish Commissioners. Action on changing any established season must be taken by the commissioners at either a special or regular meeting.

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