Philly deer cull nets 287 kills, 145 in NE parks

The Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation shot and killed 287 deer in city parks during the annual Fairmount Park Deer Management program, including 145 from two Northeast parks.

Parks and Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell announced the results of the deer cull in an April 1 news release. The nighttime shooting began in December and continued on 15 dates over 16 weeks. A park curfew, 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., coincided with the shooting in an effort to keep citizens out of harm’s way.

Sharpshooters killed 107 deer in Pennypack Park and 38 in Tacony Creek Park, along with 71 from Wissahickon Valley Park, 48 from West Fairmount Park and 23 from Cobbs Creek Park.

The Department of Parks and Recreation harvested 7,000 pounds of deer meat as a result of the cull and delivered the venison to local food banks.

“The amount of deer removed represents a significant step toward reversing the impact of deer overpopulation on the vegetation in these forests and reducing the number of deer-vehicle collisions on Philadelphia roadways,” the department stated in the news release. ••