DOC's work with deer
We are eradicating deer from Northland, removing some recently introduced deer from Egmont National Park and preventing deer from dispersing through parts of Taranaki, controlling deer in Kaweka Forest Park to let mountain beech seedlings recover, and controlling deer in the Murchison Mountains to prevent deer from damaging plants that takahe eat. Hunters working on foot remove deer from the mainland islands at Otamatuna (Te Urewera National Park) and Hurunui (north Canterbury).
A research programme is underway to learn how forests respond to deer control, so deer are controlled in two North Island and two South Island study areas.
In Raukumara Forest Park DOC has contracted a helicopter company specialising in deer control to focus their venison recovery operations within Raukumara Forest Park. By recovering and selling the deer, the operator will remove a pest at a lower cost than would be the case if we used a search and destroy operation. The operation will be trialled for three years to measure its success before further decisions on long term management can be made.
Elsewhere, we encourage people to hunt by issuing free permits and allowing some commercial operators to harvest deer for the export venison trade.
Consequences of deer control for Kaweka mountain beech forest dynamics (PDF, 848K)
Deer impacts in alpine grasslands of Fiordland National Park: A report on the measurement of alpine browse transects between 2006 and 2009 (PDF, 1564K)