Sioux Falls Police Department Removed 50 Deer as Part of Deer Management Plan

The Sioux Falls Police Department has wrapped up their deer removal operation for 2018. As part of the Deer Management Plan, the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks recently issued 50 depredation deer tags to the Sioux Falls Police Department. All 50 deer tags were successfully filled between January 1 and February 18.

The deer removal operation was focused in three separate areas: the southeast, west, and northeast areas in Sioux Falls. All three areas contain high deer populations, which lead to a high number of vehicle accidents and extensive landscaping damage. A total of 25 deer were removed from the west and southeast, and 25 deer were removed from the northeast.

The long-term comprehensive Deer Management Plan for Sioux Falls was developed in cooperation with the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks. The plan involves public education, an ordinance that prohibits deer feeding, and the removal of a limited number of deer. The decision to harvest deer will be evaluated year-to-year by the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks based on annual deer counts, vehicle collisions, and other factors listed in the plan.

The goal is not to eliminate all deer in Sioux Falls, but to better manage the health and well-being of the deer that live inside city limits. Several deer removed this year were found to have injuries such as internal injuries or broken legs, which would have led to slow, painful deaths. Lower deer populations allow for a healthier deer herd, as disease transmission and starvation are reduced. Keeping the deer population in check will help the remaining deer herd stay healthy and will create safer roadways for drivers. Fewer traffic accidents due to deer/vehicle collisions have occurred this year than in previous years in the areas where deer have been removed the past three years.

The City of Sioux Falls worked in cooperation with Sportsmen Against Hunger in order to process the meat from the removed deer. More than 1,500 pounds of deer meat were donated to the needy.