According to a release from Montgomery County, the Montgomery County Division of Parks and Heritage Services will conduct a one-day, controlled, antlerless deer hunt at the Norristown Farm Park on Wednesday, Jan. 23, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Please note that the Farm Park will be closed to the general public, as well as all other passive recreational activities, on the day of the hunt.
As in the past, hunters participating in this year’s hunt will be required to use a 12-gauge shotgun containing slug ammunition only, (no buckshot). Additionally, all hunters will be required to hunt from a self-provided, self-climbing tree stand with functioning safety harness. (Note: No ladder stands, hang-on stands, screw in pegs, or any other device which could affect the tree’s health will be permitted.) Permits for the hunt have already been distributed.
All Pennsylvania Game Commission laws will be in effect on the day of the hunt. Furthermore, the hunt itself will be closely monitored for safety and compliance by officials from various law enforcement agencies.
This year’s hunt is a continuation of a wildlife management program that began in 2005. The goal of the program is to contain a burgeoning deer population and allow the park's understory/varied habitat to regenerate for the benefit of both the park’s resident and transient wildlife.
In 2005 the park’s deer herd was estimated at 300-500 animals. Since the inception of the hunt, significant strides have been made toward reducing the number of vehicle accidents involving deer on the roadways surrounding the park. The park’s varied ecosystems have begun a modest regeneration and damage to neighboring landscapes and agricultural commodities has decreased slightly.
In addition, the program seeks to control the spread of Lyme Disease carrying ticks and limit the potential for animal starvation resulting from diminished and/or inadequate winter food supplies. The herd is currently estimated to contain some 150-200 animals. While much improved, the number of deer on the property remains well above that which the land can adequately support.
For additional information concerning this year’s hunt, please call the Farm Park office at 610-270-0215, Monday through Friday, between the hours of 7 a.m. and 4:15 p.m. Additional information related to the hunt may be posted on the web at www.parks.montcopa.org.
Norristown Farm Park is owned by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and is operated by Montgomery County Parks and Heritage Services, a division of the Department of Assets and Infrastructure. Montgomery County is dedicated to preserving this unique and valuable open space, providing passive recreation for the region, as well as the continuance of normal farming operations on the agricultural lands.