Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Deerly beloved

What's this!?!? Can't feed the deer? Does this mean the Commonwealth can fine you if Bambi is caught gnawing on your azaleas? Can I still feed them 123 grain A-MAXes?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Really this asinine law adds up to nothing considering whitetailed deer are amazingly prolific and can eat pretty much any plant in the state. So what, putting handfuls of corn or apples in your yard is going to bring about famine and pestilence to the whitetail population?

Feeding them can unnaturally increase population numbers that damage natural habitats and can increase unwanted human-deer conflicts.
Human-deer conflicts? Like this kind? If you really wanted to reduce said conflicts, then how about rescinding that other asinine law that says folks can't hunt on Sundays. I bet in two seasons the number of vehicle/deer collisions would plummet. And how exactly does feeding them increase their population? Deer are some of the most fruitful creatures on the planet; I highly doubt saltlicks and C'Mere Deer are going to make them hornier than they already are.

Now lets talk about the "damage [to] natural habitats." Do you really think that DC has at times had 200 deer per square mile because residents feed them? I think the vehicular slaughter and mangled gardens and flower pots should be considered as damaged natural habitat, as it includes both human and deer living space. Maybe something should be done about the explosion of the deer population in highly developed areas before the state resorts to fining grandma for tossing peaches into her yard.

***ETA: I didn't catch this little gem the first time around:

The practice can also be misconstrued as deer baiting, which is illegal.
I side with Ted Nugent in that everything a hunter does to make a kill is "baiting."

Sitting in a stand watching a corn field?


Propped up against a tree on a ridgeline watching the creek?


Waiting for a buck to come back to a scrape?


It's all an illusion made to keep you in a particular mindset. I raise the bullshit flag on this one; if the state cares so much about a healthy deer population, they would shelf stupid laws like this one and let hunters shoot deer on Sundays.

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