The most anticipated archery deer hunting season kicks off this Saturday in Wildlife Management Areas 2B, 5C and 5D. The statewide archery deer season begins two weeks later on Sept. 29. Coincidentally, the early archery bear season also opens Sept. 15 in the same trio of WMUs.
But the primary pursuit is deer. And we do have an abundance of them. In fact, too many in certain areas.
Most recently about a dozen Salisbury Township residents voiced their concern at a commissioners’ meeting citing the deer population in their area has escalated to the tune of herds of deer numbering in the hundreds that are causing horticultural damage, their droppings are becoming a health hazard, and they’re transmitting ticks that can cause Lyme disease. One resident also pointed out the deer have become a major road hazard by colliding with vehicles primarily at 24th Street and Lehigh Parkway North. The resident asked Salisbury commissioners to contact the City of Allentown so they could implement a deer population control plan because most of the deer come from Allentown’s Lehigh Parkway area. The commissioners indicated they would draft a letter to the city to have them explore having the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture Division of Wildlife Services implement a population control program that would utilize a controlled sniper program.
That area does have an abundance of deer, and in fact on Friday afternoon, driving north on Oxford Drive where it turns into S. 24th Street, I noticed two late born fawns with spots feasting on the lawn of a large home on the west side of the highway.
On a recent visit to the City of Allentown’s recycling facility on Oxford where it meets Fish Hatchery Road, one worker there showed me a phone photo he took of a beautiful 8-point buck in velvet, standing atop one of the huge mulch piles the city maintains there. He said he sees it walking around the facility where residents take their grass, shrubbery and tree clippings to be recycled.
Other large deer herds inhabit the former Trojan Powder Company’s’ vast property holdings and the Tercha Farm on old Route 22 outside of Fogelsville.
In July, my wife was checking our security camera system and said “you’re not going to believe this.” Our cameras recorded a large doe standing on our west end Allentown front lawn at 3 a.m. In checking the back yard cameras, it came from the alley behind my house and walked between my neighbors home and mine. Then it disappeared.
My late grandfather, who lived in Ironton, would go to Promised Land in the Poconos every year to hunt deer. But in all his years of hunting there, he never managed to bring one home. Now, his former Ironton property now has a large number of deer living in the small woods to the rear of his former home. He would be amazed.
These areas would be ideal for archery hunting as the residents would not hear it happening if sharpshooters were employed. I recall talking to an upper Bucks County landowner who would only allow bowhunters on her property because she didn’t have to hear it happening. Same goes for Salisbury residents who some would not take well to hearing gun shots near their homes.
This all goes to show how deer have managed to survive and multiply after getting pushed out from suburban areas and woodlands that are now warehouses and housing developments where they once lived.
We’ve also noticed an unusual number of late born fawns, with spots, for this time of year. Some are feeding in fields while others were road killed. Because of this, Bob Danenhower, of Bob’s Wildlife Taxidermy in Orefield, is concerned that bowhunters may shoot their mother’s thereby depriving the fawns of the nourishing milk they need to survive.
On a side note, if you’re a bowhunter looking for truly fresh deer scent, Bob’s Taxidermy will once again be handling Yurine-Luck doe-in-heat and buck scent. Call 610-398-7609 to insure it’s in stock.
FREE FISHING & FUN IN THE PARKWAY
Saturday, Sept. 22 from 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM, the Allentown Parks and Recreation Dept., in concert with Lehigh County F&G Protective Association and Guardian Insurance, will host a free fishing event in Lehigh Parkway. The event will feature fishing, casting instructions for beginners, arts, crafts, demonstrations plus a food truck with food and refreshments. To register go to www.lvcil.org.fishing.
Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.