It has become conventional wisdom that culling deer is a necessary measure that humans must take in order to protect deer and their habitats from the effects of over-population. But new research has found that, in fact, areas with more deer actually have higher biodiversity.[social_buttons]
The study, performed by researchers with the National Park Service and Ohio State University, seems to support the position of many animal rights activists have held for years—deer should be left alone.
The study found that many insects and other animals preferred to live in the area with deer activity. While centipedes, pill bugs, millipedes, and beetles were found in similar quantities in both sections, the researchers found almost three times as many salamanders, over five times as many snakes, and 11 percent more snails in the area where deer were allowed.
“We need to be aware of what’s happening in these forest ecosystems,” said Katherine Greenwald, co-author of the study. “Culling deer may cascade into affecting plants, salamanders, and other creatures in ways we can’t even imagine. So before we start removing deer we should study what’s really happening in these areas because there are a whole host of other issues that go along with culling.”