DEWITT, N.Y. -- Years of efforts came to fruition Monday, as the town of DeWitt board unanimously passed a deer management plan.
Town leaders point to the number of deer as a clear indication of a major issue.
"We have five times the natural condition for deer," DeWitt town supervisor Ed Michalenko said.
Michalenko said that with a high deer population come a host of problems -- for one, health and safety.
"Lyme disease and Lyme disease control," Michalenko said. "DeWitt, in particular, is one of the highest incidents of deer/automobile accidents."
Town leaders said the management plan is designed to both lower car accidents and Lyme disease cases. The town's approach will be a lethal bait and cull.
Any opposition from residents Monday wasn't about the idea of limiting deer, but the lethal method.
"You're doing things that hunters can't do, and most ethical hunters, fair chase hunters, would never do," one resident said. "We never bait."
"I would encourage us to explore those non-lethal methods," another resident said.
Town leaders said the bait and cull will be more effective with the current population.
"It's one of the more cost-effective ways," Michalenko said. "What we've seen of the non-lethal controls might be an option later, because we do realize this will be a long-term plan."
It's a plan already years in the making and one that will soon be put in motion. The culling won't be able to begin until the winter months under DEC rules. Town leaders hope to have sites selected by that time, and federal sharpshooters will come in.