Deerland: America's Hunt for Ecological Balance and the Essence of Wildness

Al Cambronne. Lyons, $18.95 (272p) ISBN 978-0-7627-8027-3
Wisconsinite writer and photographer Cambronne (Gut It, Cut It, Cook It) examines every facet of America's multibillion dollar deer hunting industry, covering a wide array of topics that will prove fascinating even for veteran hunters. With 30 million deer populating the U.S., and towns like Duluth, Minnesota, overrun, methods of downsizing the herd vary from contraceptive programs, relocations, and planting of unappetizing vegetation—all to little avail. Hungry deer cause extensive agricultural loss and rampant forest damage. Yet venison and big antlers equal big bucks. There are people who produce small farm fields especially for deer, while outfitters, suppliers, realtors, and hunters are otherwise involved in an almost unending array of moneymaking activity. Cambronne also addresses topics like high winter fawn mortality, Lyme and wasting diseases, modern "trail cam" ubiquity, manufactured scents, administration of damage claims from farmers, lollipop trees (deer-browsed young trees shorn of all but top-growth), and even camo corn (an earth-colored kernel, used as bait, that blends into the landscape). Deer management is vital and one challenge is to convince the public of over-population. For many these are emotional issues of individual livelihood as well as ecology, and Cambronne offer much to ponder. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 04/01/2013
Release date: 04/01/2013
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Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-0-7627-9314-3
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