Another 'sob sister' from Remsenburg...

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Another 'sob sister' from Remsenburg... heard from in this morning's Southampton Press Western Edition, Letters, page A9, evocatively captioned "Stop The Slaughter." The writer signs herself Kathy Hofmann.

(Other evocative, emotionally charged words and phrases highlighted in red.)

"Governor Cuomo signed into law, in April 2014, the new setback for deer hunting on Long Island. Hunters can now kill deer with high-powered bows 150 feet from your house. Hunting season runs from October 1 until January 31.

The Remsenburg Association, and 76 homeowners out of 900 residents who live in the hamlet, decided that there were way too many deer in Remsenburg. So, without a vote, in came Hunters For Deer and the slaughter began. Just because the deer were eating their flowers."

(Ms. Hofmann should be careful lest she encourage a whole slew of those 824 non-affiliated residents to become dues-paying members of the Association and vote to have a year-'round deer cull.)

"Hunters For Deer named this slaughter 'The Remsen­burg Project.' Christian Killoran, the president of Hunters For Deer, is a resident of Remsenburg. If the club can acquire its nuisance permit, this will allow them to hunt deer year-round."

(There ya go!)

"Therefore, if the summer residents of Remsenburg are wondering where all the deer have gone, let me inform them that 80 healthy deer were slaughtered by this hunting club. That is close to an entire herd of deer—deer that have been in this area for generations."

(I have no idea where Ms. Hofmann obtains her in­for­mation, but she underestimates the efficacy of this past Winter's deer cull, #1, and, #2, white-tailed deer commonly live about two-to-three years, and have a maximum life span "in the wild" of 20 years. Few, however live past 10 years of age, so exactly whose "generations" is she referencing?)

"Hunters For Deer brought total strangers into our neighborhood, from as far away as Queens, with dangerous weapons to kill the deer from dawn until dusk. The arrows used travel at 280 feet per second and have razor-sharp tips. Because of the inaccuracy of the novice hunter, many deer were wounded and died a horrible, slow death."

(I can hear Perry Mason stand to object: "Assuming facts not in evidence, your honor!" )

"This is a danger for our community. If these arrows can kill a deer, they surely can kill a child, grandchild or pet. This will happen each hunting season unless we stop high-powered bow hunting for deer in residential areas.

Kathy Hofmann
Remsenburg "

That's a lot of alarums, scarums and horrific hyperbole in one relatively short letter... not to mention misstatements of facts.

As I've stated many times, I'm not a hunter even though I certainly enjoy venison from time to time.

But over the past two decades the area's deer have evolved from an occasional charming sighting, to a clear and omni-present menace to motorists, crops and plant­ings, and the barely rational bambiists can bleat all they want using words like "slaughter" and "horrible, slow deaths," but the educated and enlightened view is that the deer population must be controlled.

What works best is predation, and as W. J. J. Hoge noted several years back...

"The practical choices are hunters, wolves, or mountain lions. Considering that the hunters can be expected to limit their predation to the deer, they strike me as the best choice...."

(The introduction of Grey Wolves or Eastern Mountain Lions, actually Cougars, into the area, while appeal­ing, would play as much havoc with household pets as they would with the deer.)

The benefits of the Remsenburg deer culling program are many and unrefuted by intelligent and unemotional thought, and while Ms. Hofmann and others may not like it, it's necessary... and working!


1. Scarlett said...

And you didn't even bring up "Chronic Wasting Disease," an untreatable, alway fatal brain and nervous system disease found in deer, elk and moose. This is something "bambiists," as you term them, like to ignore when they are railing against deer culls.

Right! CWD prions are shed through saliva, urine and the feces of infected animals. Healthy deer can pick up the disease by direct contact with the infected animals body fluids or by eating contaminated sources of food or water. This is a major health hazzard!

2. Jeanne Speir said...

In this part of the country, I don't think we're seeing the scourge of CWD yet; the deer and wildlife version of mad cow disease that humans can contract.

We have more than our share of problems with the truly massive local deer population.

Tick populations are largely hosted by deer. The more deer, the more ticks. The illnesses they may carry are a serious local public health issue. From the violently itchy "chigger-like" larval Lone Star Tick bites to the "malarial" babesiosis, everyone out here knows someone who has been ill or very ill. Lyme, erlichiosis and anasplasmosis are now common infections. Other rickettsial infection are affecting humans and their pets. The problematic alpha-gal reaction to the Lone Star Tick bite is now being recognized.

The deer population have flourished not only on "flowers," but also on vegetable crops, trees and plants. This is not good for public health or the environment.

They also pose a sudden and extremely serious road hazard. There are 1,600,000 collisions annually with deer in this country according to Geico.

The deer population has skyrocketed. Suffolk County is estimated to have 26,000-37,000 deer. They pose serious health risks to humans, pets and livestock; the terrible ecological impact on our natural flora and fauna has been well-documented by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

It's funny. We routinely "slaughter" bacterial illnesses and cancers with the blink of an eye. I guess because we can't see them we consider saving a human life "OK." Because the scourge of deer appear as four-legged like a dog, only bigger, with pretty eyes and a pretty white tail, they're free to spread pestilence and destroy natural habitats?

I've seen far too many terribly ill people to support this misguided crusade.

I cede to the wisdom of experts on vector control and environmental conservation. This is a Public Health issue, not a sweet Walt Disney fantasy.

If one wants to save something from slaughter, go to the nearest kill-shelter and adopt a pet. And make sure to protect it from ticks and in-rut bucks.

Well stated dear lady!

It's funny... I almost ended this OtBB entry with "My wife will be along shortly with the science stuff."

3. WR Moore said...

Perhaps if the concerned citizen managed to sit through an uncut video of how deer die in the wild, she might change her mind... but I doubt it.

I'd vote for the wolves. They'd class up the neighborhood and might thin the herd of the chattering class.

Despite the official denials of the Virginia F&G folks, we have workplace video of at least one couger. (Maybe it was just passing through.)

And I doubt it as well.

In re that cougar... perhaps it was headed back North after Wintering in Florida.smiley

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