Essay, 3 pages (650 words)

Deer overpopulation

1. The strongest argument for controlling deer population through hunting is the loss of both flora and fauna in most of the forests where these deer are found to large densities.  The significant increase in the number of deer can hurt the habitat because these animals tend to overgraze and compete for food resources with the other animals such as the birds.  Hunting may be the cheapest way of controlling the deer population because it only entails killing these animals.

Relocating the deer to other places may be more expensive because it will involve catching the deer and re-introducing these animals to a less populated habitat.  Hunting is controlled and regulated through policy regarding hunting seasons.

When the population of a particular hunting species is low for a certain season, then a hunting policy will be implemented for that season, describing that this activity is prohibited because it may be possible that this species will be lost from excessive hunting.  I do not agree with the argument that hunters are just a substitute for the absence of natural predators.  It should be understood that natural predators hunt for their prey because they need food in order to survive.  In this case, hunters kill animals as a form of leisure and thus this is not an equivalent substitute for a natural event.

2. One major concern associated with deer overpopulation is the loss of plant species in the forest due to the grazing of these animals.  It has been reported that specific plant species are now difficult to find because the deer have consumed these plants.  Another concern of deer overpopulation is the loss of other animal species such as the birds, which also survive from eating the flowers and plants in the forest.  Deer and birds thus compete for this food resource and the deer simply out-competes the birds, resulting in the relocation of birds to other habitats in order for them to find food.

Another concern associated with deer overpopulation is the safety of the public.  There are reports that deer crossings have caused car accidents and even loss of life.  Deer overpopulation has also been a concern for the stability of the ecosystem, wherein their dominance in the forest may cause further deterioration of the plant and animal species due to the insufficiency of food resources for the other living organisms.

3. One strong argument against encouraging hunting to control deer populations is that the artificial method of decreasing the density of deer may result in additional ecological imbalances.  Another strong argument is that these animals should be treated with respect, just like any other living, and killing them may be considered as a form of murder.  One alternative to hunting and killing is to relocate these deer to other places that do not have deer population issues.  Hunting can be cruel because it instills fear among these animals and these may eventually evolve into a species that is adaptive to hunting, such as generating a color that makes them blend with their surroundings.  I believe that wild animals have to right to thrive in the wild and that they should not be killed for generating more offspring than what humans expected of them.

4. According to PETA, an effective method of control is to erect fences that will prohibit the deer from spreading out in the open.  In addition, plants that are historically known to be repellant to deer grazing should be planted in order to dissuade these animals from further eating and grazing.

5. I do not support the use of hunting as a form of population control for deer because the movement of the deer was initiated by development of infrastructures in specific areas.  Since construction of buildings entailed clearing of forest land, these deer were pushed to move out and find a new habitat for their species, not knowing that they would pose a threat to the other species that are living in that same habitat (Schmitz, 2008).  If the builders and developers were more cautious of the possible destruction of habitats that would arise when they initiated the deforestation of a land area, this would not have happened.

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