Sharpshooters begin culling deer at Valley Forge

KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. (AP) – Sharpshooters have killed more than
200 deer as part of an operation to reduce the deer population in
Valley Forge National Historical Park.

Pennsylvania Game Commission officials say 225 deer were killed
in November, about half the goal for this winter.

Park officials are trying to reduce the herd from about 1,250 to
under 200 over the next two years. Natural resource manager
Kristina Heister tells The Philadelphia Inquirer the burgeoning
deer population is endangering the habitats of other species,
including ground-nesting birds.

Heister says nearly 7,000 pounds of venison have been donated to
the needy as a result of the hunt.

Critics are trying to halt the deer kills, saying wildlife
officials have failed to consider other options, including boosting
the coyote population.


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