Ind. (AP) - A study by a Purdue University research team has found that
regulated deer hunts in Indiana state parks have helped restore forests
damaged by too many white-tailed deer.
ecology professor Michael Jenkins says hunting is an effective means of
promoting the growth of Indiana’s natural areas. He says hunting helps
maintain an ecological balance. The state Department of Natural Resource
introduced controlled hunts in state parks in 1993, with most parks adopting
the strategy by 1996.
The study compared
the amount of plant cover in 108 plots in state parks and found the total
plant cover more than doubled from 1996-97 to 2010. The study also showed
that the hunting program led to the recovery of native species and
discouraged the spread of invasive and exotic species.