I Could Have Faked my Deer Survey Answers, But Didn’t

Idaho deer

Whack! Another deer hit by a vehicle. Deer munching flowers and gardens. Deer getting squirrelly during the breeding season and running through neighborhoods, playgrounds and around town. Deer, basically, being deer, but with a lot of humans around.

It’s not a new problem. But some officials in New Jersey are trying to get some more information and maybe get a handle on things.

The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife is conducting an online deer survey called “Living with Deer in New Jersey.” Participation is anonymous, which although beneficial for state officials seeking honest answers can easily lead to dishonest and inaccurate responses.

I visited the NJDFW website, found the survey link and then filled out the survey with fake answers. I said deer had wrecked my garden to the tune of $5,000 or more in damage, we had four vehicle accidents with deer, they should be killed, and everyone from state officials to residents had a responsibility to help with a management plan.

Wham. Easy as pie. For someone wanting more deer eradicated or who wanted to skew results, it would appear easy to do so with a group effort. Questions asked about vehicle encounters, disease, damage to yards or gardens, homeowner values, whether hunting is done by someone in the survey-taker’s family or they allow hunting, and other questions.

I did not hit “Submit” with my fake answers.

If you live in New Jersey and want to contribute, though, it’s a good survey. Check it out here.

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