APPROVED: Additional deer management efforts for Martin Luther King Jr. Recreational and Paint Branch Stream Valley between Rt. 29 (Columbia Pike) and Fairland Rd, and Red Door Store Historical/Cultural Park
After a review of the public input and associated data. Deer management operations have been approved to take place at Martin Luther King Jr. Recreational Park, Paint Branch Stream Valley Parks and Red Door Store Historic Park beginning January 10, 2015. - media release
From September 24th through October 29th, the public was invited to tell us what they think on the proposed expansion of the M-NCPPC Montgomery Park's Deer Management Program for these parks in order to address damage caused by an increasing population of deer, including deer-related automobile accidents, damage to natural resources, and increased potential of communicable diseases such as Lyme disease. The decision to add this park to the deer management operations will be made after review of citizen complaints and input, and with strong support from the community.
The New Initiatives
The parks, located in Silver Spring and Olney, have been selected to address damage caused by an increasing population of deer, including deer-related automobile accidents, damage to natural resources, and increased potential of communicable diseases such as Lyme disease. This parkland, spanning 700 acres, is inhabited by an estimated 191 – 241 deer, six times the recommended density, and include:
Martin Luther King Jr. Recreational Park and Paint Branch Stream Valley Parks - locator map / public notice flier (PDF, 200KB)
The parkland between Rt. 29 (Columbia Pike) and Fairland Rd. including: Paint Branch Stream Valley Units 6&5 and adjacent Paint Branch and Tamarack Neighborhood Parks, Pilgrim Hill Local Park and Valley Mill Special Park)
Located in eastern Montgomery County, the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Park and Paint Brach Stream Valley Park (Units 5&6, including the Paint Branch and Tamarack Neighborhood parks and Pilgrim Hills Local and Valley Mill Special Parks, located between Rt.29, Columbia Pike, and Fairland Road) serves as recreation space and riparian stream valley buffer providing a wide variety of active and passive activities. The parkland is surrounded by residential development.
Recent estimates within the Paint Branch Stream Valley Park, Units 5 and 6 indicate the deer population is nearly four times the recommended density for an area this size. The decision to add these parks to the deer management operations was made after review of citizen complaints and input, and with strong support from the community.
Red Door Store Historical / Cultural Park - locator map / public notice flier (PDF, 200KB)
Located in eastern Montgomery County, the Red Door Store Historical/Cultural Park is an agricultural property. The parkland is unscheduled open space, primarily functioning to preserve the historic Red Door Store, and consists of open meadow and forest land. The Department of Parks is seeking to implement deer population management on the property in order to continue regional operations, ongoing since 2003, in the Northwest Branch Stream Valley Park, Unit 7 and Woodlawn Special Park, in which operational effectiveness has been impacted by legislation requiring a three-hundred yard firearms discharge buffer surrounding Maryland schools.
The proposal suggests implementing Park Police-based Sharpshooting of deer in these parks. This program utilizes highly trained and certified Law Enforcement officers to remove deer at night, when the park is closed to the public, during the months of January and February, and annually as required.
During these operations, park closures will be strictly enforced from 6:00 pm until 6:00 am, Monday through Friday, January 10 through February 28.
Public notice of such activities and park closure will be posted throughout the park, on our website, and Park Police patrol will be provided to keep citizens informed. Deer removal will occur at pre-selected sites chosen to ensure public safety and safe weapons discharge. All deer harvested through this effort will be processed and donated to charity for use at local soup kitchens.
Thank you for your comments. The comment period for this initiative came to an end as of 5pm on October 29, 2014
Thank you for your valuable input Montgomery Parks appreciates all public comments received regarding the new initiatives. - summary chart of public comments. If you have any additional questions for Staff, please contact us.
- Press and Media Releases
MEDIA ADVISORY: Montgomery Parks, December 2, 2014
MEDIA ADVISORY: Montgomery Parks, September 24th, 2014
ONLINE ARTICLE: Patch.com, Wednesday, December 3, 2014 - Parks Added to Controlled Deer Hunt
ONLINE ARTICLE: WTOP.com, Wednesday, October 8, 2014 - Montgomery Co. deer control solutions proposed
ONLINE ARTICLE: BethesdaNow.com, Monday, October 6, 2014 - Parks: Deer Management Program Having Limited Effect
ONLINE ARTICLE: Gazette.net, Wednesday, September 24, 2014 - Rockville report says more deer getting hit
ONLINE ARTICLE: WashingtonPost.com, September 29, 2014 - Trying to limit the number of deer, with surprising results
ONLINE ARTICLE: Patch.com, Thursday, September 25, 2014 - Montgomery County Parks to Close for Deer Hunts
- Audio Interviews
ONLINE INTERVIEWS: Radio Station, WMAL 105.9 FM - audio files from interviews with County Council Members Phil Andrews and Cherri Branson
Bill Hamilton, Principal Natural Resource Specialist
back to top - Last update: December 4, 2014