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In response to the recent “Time to end deer hunting” letter [Dec. 7-9, Fairfax County Times], I believe it is important to clear up the deer hunting facts as they pertain to the health and safety of Fairfax County residents. I am a resident of Centreville and located in proximity to county park land. Approximately three years ago, the park deer population increased to levels that ultimately caused the herds to wander throughout normally residential areas. Many deer just roamed the neighborhoods and never returned back into the park areas. Simultaneously, major increases in property damage, auto collisions and Lyme disease infections occurred. Lyme disease finally reached epidemic levels with several chronic cases resulting in lifelong disability.

Two years ago Fairfax County introduced archery as a means of reducing and controlling the deer population. The results have been almost unbelievable. Herd levels were significantly reduced and deer penetration into residential areas has almost disappeared. Anyone who thinks that deer hunting is not effective or needed to ensure safety, should spend some time talking to Fairfax County residents who have actually dealt with this problem. From a cost standpoint, the expenses of deer reduction via archery are minimal, especially when compared to the extremely expensive humane solutions being proposed that would feed, groom and provide for medical treatment.

Our objectives for deer management must be to maintain herds in a cost efficient manner that can be supported by the available habitat and to ensure the safety of Fairfax County residents.

Robert E Jakubowski

Cub Run Stream Valley Neighbors