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Keywords:

  • citizen advisory committees;
  • deer–human conflicts;
  • Odocoileus virginianus;
  • Pennsylvania;
  • public input;
  • white-tailed deer

Abstract

Effective deer management must consider diverse stakeholder values. From 2006 to 2011, the Pennsylvania (USA) Game Commission implemented citizen advisory committees (CACs) to measure deer–human conflicts and tolerance for deer populations in each wildlife management unit. There was a general lack of public interest in participating in CACs. Key stakeholder groups were often absent and CACs exhibited a strong hunter bias. Although the CAC process seemed to benefit those involved, the scope was limited and likely did not represent the values and attitudes of the entire citizenry within the wildlife management unit. As a result of this CAC experience, the Pennsylvania Game Commission moved to a citizen survey in 2011 to ensure all interests are represented as the future success of deer management depends on greater understanding of the values and attitudes of every stakeholder. © The Wildlife Society, 2012