The deer management plan adopted earlier this year by the city of Chadron and approved this summer by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission was put into action for the first time Monday with the killing of nearly 2 dozen deer inside the city limits.
The plan is aimed at reducing the growing deer population inside Chadron, estimated at roughly 225 within a 7-square mile area, that are damaging gardens and other property, being hit by vehicles, and spreading Chronic Wasting Disease – CWD – to other deer.
Police Chief Tim Lordino says he, Lt Rick Hickstein, a Game and Parks Conservation Officer, and an Alliance police lieutenant shot the deer under Game and Parks guidance to multiple locations around the city.
The deer plan uses the Game and Parks damage control permit program with agency biologists helping identify which deer to cull, starting with ones that appear to be infected with CWD. The city has received 30 permits to start.
Only one of the animals killed yesterday fit the CWD profile, and Lordino says the culling will have no effect on next month’s firearm deer season.
All the deer that are killed and don’t have CWD will be given away to the public. Arrangements have been made for the deer to quickly be dressed and put in a large mobile cooler, so Lordino is planning only a few more culling days.
Although the deer were taken in Chadron, Lordino says the meat program isn’t limited to only Chadron residents.
The first culling under the Chadron deer plan had been expected early this spring, but the arrival of the coronavirus pandemic and technical delays in getting Game and Parks approval pushed it back until now.