Pierre’s Deer Management Task Force has determined there’s no need for a deer harvest in city limits this year.
The decision was made following a deer count completed earlier this month. During the count, 29 deer were observed within city limits. That’s up from 22 deer counted by the task force last year and far less than the 48 observed by the group in 2019.
The task force hasn’t recommended a harvest in city limits since 2011.
“I don’t think the local herds have fully recovered from the Missouri River flood,” said Animal Control Officer Farley Zuber. “Additionally, there are a few diseases impacting local wildlife right now that are helping keep the numbers down.
The task force also considers deer nuisance complaints, traffic crashes, and input from the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks when making a deer harvest recommendation.
In the last two years, there have been a total of 19 traffic crashes within city limits that involved a deer and 18 complaints of nuisance deer.
The Deer Management Task Force is comprised of a City Commissioner and nine citizens appointed by the Mayor and informed by the Pierre Police Department. The Task Force was established in 2007 by the City Commission to establish and administer an urban deer management program.