DEERHAVEN RESIDENTS .
Chairman of the Deerhaven POA Board, Renea Latham has received the following information from Gary Baty, Chairman of the Blue Lake POA Board pertaining to the Blue Lake Deer Management Plan which that subdivision is now in the process of implementing. This information hopefully will clarify just what their plan involves.
From: Gary Baty
To: Renea Latham
Subject: Blue Lake Deer Management Plan
Date: Thu, 22 Jan 2015
Here are some notes for you to present to the Deerhaven Board as you requested.
If there are questions please advise. I will be happy to attend a future Deerhaven Board meeting to discuss the plans with you/your Board.
Blue Lake Deer Management Plan:
The 3-stage deer plan was enacted by unanimous vote, by the prior Board, and is being continued by the current Board. Also with input and counsel from the Texas Parks and Wildlife (TP&W) and is as follows:
a) Education to residents and property owners as to what to feed the deer (please note the Board is not proposing an ordinance to stop the feeding of deer);
b) Restriction of access through the construction of an 8′ deer fence across the southern boundary of our property line to restrict deer from entering Blue Lake so the overall health program for the deer population can be implemented.
c) The trapping and transport of deer, as required, to maintain a population that is healthier than the current overabundant and unhealthy deer population. There were a number of deer counts completed in the last two (2) years (again with input/direction from TP&W) which demonstrated that Blue Lake had over twice the deer population recommended by TP&W for a community the size of Blue Lake.
The plan being implemented is not to “exterminate” the Blue Lake deer population. Quite the contrary, the plan being implemented is being done so with the support and counsel of the TP&W and it’s primary objective is to improve the health of the deer population in Blue Lake. Certainly there is no intention to be cruel to the deer;
Trapping and transporting of any deer will be done by professionals, certified by TP&W, specifically to perform these tasks as professionally and humanely as possible. There has been no action taken on this phase of the deer plan as the fence needs to be completed before any decision is taken on the trapping and transporting of the deer but it is, in fact, the final stage of the plan being implemented.
Part of the deer fence has, indeed, been constructed (RR2831 – west to Lake LBJ) and the fact this was being planned and implemented was discussed at several quarterly general board meetings and there was no one present who voiced an objection – in fact, there were many in attendance who voiced support for the overall plan because they see the deer population in Blue Lake is suffering due to overwhelming growth in numbers and limited food supply. The prior and current Board voted in support of the 3-phased approach to improving the health of the deer population. As a side-note the fence will certainly impede the movement of deer in/out of Blue Lake (that is one of the objectives) and it will also impede feral hog movement into Blue Lake. We have seen many such hogs hit by vehicles on State Hwy 71 only 2.6 miles from our southern border and so it is only a matter of time until they enter and endanger our community. So this was an added benefit to the fence being installed.
The current plan is to proceed with construction of the deer fence from 2831 – east to Lake LBJ. The Board will be meeting with Blue Lake residents who have a home on the property line between BLE and Deerhaven where the deer fence is planned. As a courtesy, and to be a good neighbor, the Board will also meet with Deerhaven residents who have property on the proposed fence line to explain to them what is happening and why. The fence will be constructed on the property line of the BLE resident (with their approval). If a resident does not approve then a fence will not be constructed on their property.
In addition, the plan calls for the installation of a cattleguard at the BLE end of RR 2831, on BLE property, as a final step to limiting deer from moving in/out of BLE. The current cattleguard being considered is one that will allow foot/bicycle/car/truck traffic to cross without issues. Small pets may have to be carried across. The plan is to add a gate next to the cattleguard for pedestrian/larger pet traffic “if” required.
The Board did communicate the intended plans on multiple occasions to those in attendance at the quarterly (and annual) general board meetings and in newsletters so these initiatives have been very transparent.
The intention of the deer plan that is being implemented is to, in fact, improve the overall health of the deer population as we all enjoy seeing a healthy deer in our neighborhood. There is absolutely no intention to “exterminate” the deer population in our community. The Board appreciates differing opinions and feedback and will continue to operate openly and with input from residents/property owners. We do not expect everyone to agree with each/every decision being taken and so the communications will continue so our residents/property owners are aware of Board considerations and decisions so there is time for discussions before decisions are implemented. We also will ensure the facts are clearly stated and not distorted by parties who choose to misrepresent the facts and yes the Board will reply to any misrepresentations as expediently as possible. The Board is basically elected to not only preserve what is special about Blue Lake but to enhance it as well.