The Suffolk County Department of Parks has expanded its archery hunting programs to five new East End areas, with an additional 2,250 acres for permit holders.
The three parks added are Edward V. Ecker Sr. County Park in Montauk, Northwest Creek County Park in East Hampton, and Inlet Pond County Park in Greenport. In addition, both Buckskill County Park in East Hampton and Hubbard County Park in Flanders/Hamptons Bay had their acreage expanded for more archery hunting.
“The county added acreage because of the growth of the deer population as it relates to public safety concerns such as vehicle-deer collisions, and ecological damage,” said Abdul Sada, a spokesman for the office of Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.
Southold Town Councilman Robert Ghosio said the overpopulation of deer in the town is an issue he hopes to explore further in his newly won second term on the town board, and one he wants the town and the county to address.
“I really do believe that it’s a public health and safety issue,” Ghosio said, adding that he would like to see county officials enact stronger measures to help curb the local deer population.
The archery program allows for deer hunting access to Suffolk residents during the 2017-18 NYSDEC Long Island Archery Hunting Season. The Department of Parks has additional requirements beyond current state Department of Environmental Conservation law.
Sada added that the county has cooperative hunting areas with Southold and East Hampton that allow hunting with the county’s permit or the town’s permit.
The season remains open through Jan. 31. For information about the program, visit the parks section under the “Departments” tab at the county’s official website, suffolkcountyny.gov.