Deer Removal To Begin In Park Near D.C.

Officials plan to being a nighttime culling program to thin the deer population at Rock Creek Stream Valley Park in Maryland while another reduction program is on hold due to a lawsuit.

Deer in Rock Creek Stream Valley Park number up to 100 per square mile, according to park officials. The park is run by Montgomery County and neighbors have complained about the deer eating vegetation in yards, including trees, flowers, shrubs and whatever is available.

The culling is set to being soon, although a specific date was not announced. Sharpshooters working at night plan to kill between 10-25 deer.

Meanwhile, a lawsuit filed against the National Park Service has put a similar culling program in Rock Creek Park on hold. Rock Creek Park is part of the NPS system and separately administered from the county park.

But the deer population is about the same; officials say about 80 deer per square mile have been surveyed. They, too, are decimating vegetation and the potential for disease is great, not to mention potential problems with motorists.

The lawsuit has pushed the Rock Creek Park plan to sometime in March. A hearing is scheduled for March 4.