Offer of help from Ct DEP

Offer of assistance from CT DEP’s Deputy Commissioner Susan Frechette: July 2010


"For communities seeking to reduce the risk of contracting Lyme disease and its attendant costs, DEP strongly encourages towns, non-profits and private landowners, especially those in Fairfield County, to allow hunting on their land during the regulated deer season as a means to reduce overabundant deer populations.  The many types of currently authorized deer hunting (bow and arrow, shotgun, muzzleloader) have been effective at reducing and maintaining deer populations in other areas of the state. The many responsible hunters who participate in this activity can make a big difference in maintaining lower deer populations, and thereby help to reduce the population of ticks that carry Lyme disease."

According to CT DEP’s Wildlife Program there are several documented examples of real deer reduction by recreational hunters in CT: All of CT deer management zone 4 was reduced with the regulated deer hunting season.  Deer at Bluff Point state park were reduced, initially, with controlled hunting.  Deer at Yale Forest also were reduced using regulated hunting.  The Nature Conservancy – Burnham Brook and Devil’s Den observed a reduction in deer population via regulated hunting.  Also observed at Army Corps property in Windham  - - - just to name a few, in which data was collected to document change in deer density in CT. See attached table for details.

In order to achieve such reductions, DEP have made it clear to the Alliance that:

"DEP can provide assistance to a group of landowners whose properties are currently closed to hunting (or not hunted for whatever reason) that are willing to follow the Mumford Cove example.  The only reason that effort was and is successful is that the landowners drove the process with our advice.  So, if (the Alliance) can identify a group who are willing to take the lead, we stand ready to assist." 

"We do believe the solutions lie at the local level with groups of landowners of larger properties who are willing to work with responsible hunters to manage the herd – and we are available to help – as we did at Mumford Cove – if a group comes forward that is organized and wants some assistance.   Please let me know if that becomes the case.”  


Susan Frechette,

Deputy Commissioner CT DEP

July 2010

LocationType of  
Blulff Point (1.24 m2)ControlledFrom 222 to 41 deer/mi2 in 9 days 
 DEP-HuntFrom 48 to 27 deer/mi2 in 4 days 
 DEP-SharpFrom 24 to 19 deer/mi2 in 1.5 nights 
Mumford CoveControlledfrom 80/mi2 to 10/mi2 in 2 years.  3 days 
  of hunting occurred during each year 
 Regulatedmaintained at 10-15 deer/mi2 
Zone 2RegulatedMaintained at about 12 deer/mi2 
  over past 15 years. 
TNC-Devils DenControlledReduced to 25/mi2 - Per Steve P. 
TNC-Burnham BrookRegulated - Need to Ask Dave Gumbart - TNC 
Army Corps-WindhamControlledfrom 25-30 down to 3-4 during 2 years of 
  hunting (3 days during each year). 100 
  Acres of woods within 300 acres (1/2 mi2) 
  airport was open to hunting. 
Yale ForestRegulatedDeer density not estimated, but changed 
  from having no forest regeneration (before 
  hunting) to having forest regeneration 
  (after hunting) 

Susan Frechette



Deputy Commissioner, CT Department of Environmental Protection


(Contact within DEP)