BY SAM VAN CAMP
Every year I get asked by readers about how to control deer around their properties; their flower beds, their gardens and their lawns. I have addressed this issue several times before and I know that deer are a nuisance not only in rural areas but also within the city limits of many towns.
I don’t know of any real solution to the problem, especially if you live within the city limits of a city or town. A person’s garden, flowers, lawns and trees are vulnerable to the ever increasing deer herd.
There are many things you can try from inclosing your flowers with chicken wire, putting Deer Scram or Liquid Fence around or on your flowers and vegetables, placing a metal pie pan tied to a shepherds rod, hanging a bag of human hair on a string, applying Pine Sol around you plants and trees or placing rat traps around trees you want to save.
None of these methods work very well. If you live inside the city limits of a city or town there are generally laws in place that forbid discharging a weapon or bow and arrow within the boundaries.
The only time you can shoot a deer is during the deer hunting seasons and then you must have a valid Firearm Owners Identification Card (F.O.I.D. card), a valid hunting license, a Habitat Stamp and a deer permit for the deer you shoot. You must obey the laws as to how close you can legally be to a residence, building, or roadway.
People that live outside of city limits can apply for a nuisance permit from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, but you will have to show proof of the damage the deer are causing and prove to them that the issuance of such a permit is necessary.
The deer are a problem for some and the best answer I can give you is simply get used to it and do the best you can; I wish I had more.
I have been asked over and over to respond to the gun control issue. This column is a column for hunting and the shooting sports. This column is read by gun advocates, gun control advocates, anglers, hunters, trappers, nature lovers and sometimes people that are none of the above but just like to step outdoors for a few moments by reading something I have written.
Anyone that has read this column pretty well knows how I feel about owning guns so I don’t really want to talk about this issue in this column. I will however mention several things for food for thought.
When the Japanese destroyed Pearl Harbor, they hit this country with a right hand cross like no one had ever hit us with before. It knocked us to our knees and we could have been in real trouble. The Japanese highly considered invading this country but decided that would not be wise for one main reason: Every household back then owned a gun and were great marksmen because they hunted for their food. We have within our boundaries our own built-in militia and that was a risk they chose not to take.
In the 1960’s, Fidel Castro told the people of Cuba “turn in your guns and I will take care of you.” Look how these people now live just 90 miles from our coast; how many Americans jump in a boat, risk their lives at sea, to live in Cuba?
There is a lot that can be learned from the past if you just take the time to read up on it or, like me, just remember.
Sam Van Camp writes about the outdoors on Fridays and Sundays. Call him at 662-6559. Fax: 446-6648. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org