Reminder: Deer Hunting Season Has Begun

Reminder: Deer Hunting Season Has Begun

Posted on September 16, 2020

This is a reminder that deer hunting season began Saturday, September 12 with fall bow hunting throughout New Jersey. Residents are reminded to use caution on open space lands and to be careful driving. More deer are moving around during this season and lower visibility at dusk arrives earlier each day.

Montgomery Township administers a public Deer Management Program to help control the deer population.  This program allows regulated deer hunting to occur on certain open space properties of the Township. All township parcels are clearly marked out with bright orange signage indicating the program is underway. Some properties are bow hunting only.  There are clear set-back requirements away from residences, where deer hunting is prohibited.

Hunting on Sundays is strictly prohibited in the Township program or on any municipally owned lands.

To view a list of Township Deer Hunting Program locations and maps and read the resolution establishing the program, go to the Deer Management Program webpage at: https://twp.montgomery.nj.us/departments/clerk/deer-management-program/

Please note that private property owners located in Montgomery and elsewhere are permitted to allow hunting on their lands and are completely independent of Montgomery Township’s Deer Management Program.  They are subject to the rules of NJDEP Fish & Wildlife, which do not prohibit bow hunting deer on Sundays on private lands.

For more information on the date ranges for specific types of hunting (there are various muzzleloader, firearm, and shotgun days starting from November 21st, go to NJDEP Division of Fish and Wildlife Deer Regulations webpage at: https://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/deer.htm (Montgomery is in Zones 12 & 14).

The hunting season ends February 20, 2021 after winter bow.

ABOUT THE MONTGOMERY DEER MANAGEMENT PROGRAM

Montgomery’s deer management program started over a dozen years ago.  It is a successful program with hunters because they select one or more properties, which have a limited number of other hunters permitted.  This gives each hunter an equally good opportunity. Two or more deer bagged per season grandfathers a hunter into the program and onto his or her selected property for the next season.  New hunters are also always welcome to apply, typically in June.

The purpose of this program is to aid in the control of the deer population so that an ecological balance can be maintained.  When deer overpopulate an area, lyme disease may spread more rapidly and more deer/car collisions occur.  Hungry deer predate on the landscaping and shrubbery of homeowners in residential neighborhoods.  Some deer will starve in the winter when there are too many deer and not enough forage is available. When there are too many deer, the forest under story may be stripped bare, preventing new tree seedlings from getting a foothold, while destroying habitat needed by other species, including certain forest dwelling song birds.  This is critical to the very existence of future forests. Invasive non-native plant species, which the deer generally do not prefer, often take over an area, creating low quality habitat and a poor food source for wildlife.

To learn more about the program, go to the Deer Management Program page of the Township website.  A link to this page is also found on left side menu of the home page.

Questions on the program may be directed to the Wildlife Management Committee at wildlifecommittee@twp.montgomery.nj.us

Administrative questions may be directed to the Montgomery Twp. Clerks Office at (908) 359-8211 ext. 215.