Growing up in a rural New York State community, the onset of autumn meant one important thing as a young driver. It is the beginning of deer season. Not only is this of importance for those that choose to hunt, but everyone that drives a car. White-tailed deer are a grossly overpopulated species in many parts of our country. Specifically, in Upstate New York, a dearth of natural predators and an abundance of corn provide just the right conditions for a population explosion. It was never a surprise, and in fact, was expected, that as a young driver you would at some point hit a deer.
The windshield of a car is not the only place these deer end up. In many states, programs and organizations feed the homeless with meat donated by hunters, and many hunters keep the meat themselves. Is the overpopulation of deer due to the weediness, and carelessness of our species, and can we find a way to return the population to a balanced state? The existing evidence says no, as deer populations continue to interact with humans, especially our cars, and our carelessness remains.