the 2017 Sustainability Forum

On Sunday, March 26, 2017 the Hudson Highlands Land Trust hosted Deer?! Oh Dear!, a community forum on the impact of deer overpopulation on our environment and ways to mitigate it at the Highlands Country Club in Garrison, NY

This event featured an informative moderated panel discussion on how to appreciate these iconic members of the Hudson Highlands ecosystem while mitigating their impact on private property and the environment at large. Breakout sessions delved into related topics like hunting, horticulture and human health with experts and knowledgable neighbors. Thank you to all those who participated in this event and to our event co-sponsor Highlands Country Club.

You will find information from the panelists, breakout leaders and other sources below:

MODERATOR:
Dr. Edwin McGowan, Director, Trailside Museums and Zoo at Bear Mountain State Park

Edwin M. McGowan is the Director of Trailside Museums and Zoo at Bear Mountain State Park and four Regional Nature Museums in Harriman State Park. He is also Director of Science for the Palisades
Region of New York State Parks, where he oversees ecological management of parklands. He earned a B.A. from Bowdoin College and Ph.D. from Binghamton University.

Slides from Ed's presentation.

PANELISTS:
Cris Golde, Garrison Hunting and Fishing Club

Cris Golde is an avid outdoorsman who grew up in the Adirondack Mountains and is a 40-year resident of Garrison. After a 33-year career as a H.S. English teacher, he started Deer Repellent Service, LLC, providing organic solutions to deer management, as well as tick and mosquito control. Cris served as President of the Garrison Fish & Game Club for five years and remains on its board of directors. He experienced lyme disease in 2003.

Handouts from Cris' presentation: Deer Management Letter and Deer Harvest Summary

Dr. William Schuster, Black Rock Forest Consortium
Bill Schuster is an ecologist and has been Executive Director of Black Rock Forest Consortium in Cornwall, NY since 1992. He has a B.A. in Biology (Columbia, 1978), an M.S. in Forest Ecology (Pennsylvania State University, 1983), a Ph.D. in Ecology (University of Colorado, 1989) and did postdoctoral research at University of Utah. His primary interests are in ecology, ecosystem management, and environmental change. He has authored or co-authored nearly 100 publications.

Slides from Bill's presentation.

Jennifer Stengle, Cornell Cooperative Extension
Jen Stengle grew up in Putnam County and learned to love its woods, streams, ponds, and overgrown pastures, travelling on foot or on horseback, often with field guides in her pack. She graduated from Cornell University in 1987, and recently completed her Masters work with an emphasis on Beneficial Organisms in Managed Landscapes. She is currently a Horticulture Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Putnam County where she is involved with a wide variety of
issues including agroforestry, landscape gardening, pollinator support, and invasive species.

Slides from Jen's presentation.

BREAKOUT SESSION LEADERS:
Susan Booth-Binczik, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Sue Booth-Binczik is a wildlife biologist with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation in Albany. Her focus is on helping municipalities around the state address issues caused by deer overabundance.

Handouts from Cris' and Susan's breakout session on hunting.

Anne Symmes, Landscape Designer
Anne Symmes, a landscape designer with a special interest in historic gardens and native plants, has worked alongside deer in many types of garden settings. Anne is also an HHLT board member. She and her husband Steve Ives and daughter Campbell, aged 17, continue to learn how to coexist happily with the deer in their garden at home.

Handouts from Anne's and Jen's breakout session on horniculture.

Nicole Wooten, Hudson Highlands Land Trust
Nicole Wooten, HHLT’s Conservation Stewardship Manager, has always spent a lot of time outdoors – for personal enjoyment and professional necessity. Her experience on lands and trails in the Highlands is supplemented by her tenures at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in Boiling Springs, PA and at the Continental Divide Trail Coalition in Golden, CO. Her work and hobbies have led her to become vigilant in her tick-bite prevention practices.

Handouts from Nicole's and Ed's breakout session on human health.

Additional Links and Resources:

Information on the Venison Donation Coalition

NYS DEC Hunting & Trapping Regulations Guide

The Hunt for Balance (New Paltz white paper, sent by Simon Gruber)

Sustainability Expo 2008