Environmental impact of Tasmania's growing deer problem to be explored—26 March 2018

Analysing the current and potential distribution of Tasmania’s growing fallow deer problem and the environmental impacts of deer is central to a new state-wide research project funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC).

Lead researcher, Professor Chris Johnson, from University of Tasmania’s School of Natural Sciences, will lead the collaborative study addressing threats posed by fallow deer to unique and sensitive environments in Tasmania, in particular the World Heritage Area.

The researchers will quantify the current and potential distribution of deer numbers across Tasmania and describe their impacts on vegetation.

Professor Johnson said conservative estimates put the total population between 20,000–40,000. 

He said modelling carried out by his team suggested that there could eventually be a million deer in Tasmania without management to control population growth.

“The increase that we have seen in numbers has hit a point where we cannot ignore it anymore,” he said.

The research is funded through the ARC's Linkage Projects scheme, and is being carried out in partnership between the University of Tasmania and the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment.

The project also includes collaboration with the NSW Department of Primary Industries, Tasmanian Land Conservatory Inc, Bush Heritage Australia and the University of Auckland.

Media issued by the University of Tasmania.

 

Image: there could eventually be a million deer in Tasmania without management to control population growth.
Source: Rob Bendall,  Wikimedia Commons

Original Published Date: 
Monday, March 26, 2018