SEA GIRT — The Sea Girt Conservancy hosted a lecture, a part of a summer series, with guest speaker R.J. Curcio, environmental specialist from the Monmouth County Park system, to educate residents on invasive plant and wildlife species and how to combat the deer population.
“We get a lot of comments about the impact deer are having on people’s homes. The conservancy is very focused on creating sustainable forests here, with what little forest we have left,” said Mike Matthews, board member of the Sea Girt Conservancy.
He, the conservancy and members of the community who attended the lecture all agreed that the deer are a nuisance to the community, especially when it comes to eating the many plants people will put in their yards. The conservancy decided to hold this lecture to “raise public consciousness and raise awareness, that will be a step in the right direction.”
Mr. Matthews said Monmouth County has been very supportive in helping the conservancy put this on. “Education is important. This is a small town. People can have a real effect on what is happening here.”
Conservancy Chairman Mike Meixsell said “Our mission is to improve and preserve the open spaces in our community. This is part of our charter, is to help educate the community on things such as invasive species, how to control them, how to plant native plants and also how we might control the deer population that is very concerning.”
White-tailed deer have exploded in population all across New Jersey after the population was over hunted prior to 1901. After this President Theodore Roosevelt established the United States Forest Service, national forests and game reserves across the country to help aid in conservation efforts across the country.
With all the natural predators such as wolves and mountain lions non-existent in New Jersey, the state is a paradise for the deer. Mr. Curcio said the deer population in New Jersey is higher than it has ever been in the history of the state. These predators are locally extinct in New Jersey due to overhunting many years ago.
“We don’t know how to solve it, but that is one of the reasons we have these educational forums to talk to the community and give them some advice on how to improve and solve the problem,” said Mr. Meixsell.
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