Georgia Public Broadcasting begins filming a future episode focused on Georgia deer
Graduate students Adam Edge and Jackie Rosenberger recently spoke with a film crew from Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB) to explain the background of the North Georgia Deer Project, the equipment used to make the project possible, and why the research is important for the state. The GPB crew filmed one of the first fawn captures of the season and witnessed its release back to Blue Ridge Wildlife Management Area.
In addition to this field site-footage, the GPB crew recently filmed interviews with Dr. Gino D'Angelo, Charlie Killmaster (Georgia's State Deer Biologist), Zach Wesner and David Osborn at the Whitehall Deer Research Facility in Athens.
Deer Lab has strong presence at Trout Unlimited event
At the Chattahoochee Forest National Fish Hatchery's Kid's Fishing Rodeo on June 8, Adam Edge and Jackie Rosenberger spread awareness about the summer fawning season. They also used this event to provide the public with information about the North Georgia Deer Project in hopes of building relationships with landowners and outdoor recreationists in the region. Public outreach is of great importance to the UGA Deer Lab.
Deer Lab supports local wildlife education center
The UGA Deer Lab recently donated several antlers from our Whitehall Deer Research Facility to Hardigree Wildlife Sanctuary in Watkinsville, Georgia. The adjacent photo was taken at a kid's camp hosted by Hardigree, where youngsters learned about wildlife conservation and white-tailed deer biology. The sanctuary's executive director, Steve Scruggs, said most of the camp participants had never before held deer antlers and enjoyed the opportunity to study them.
Central Florida bucks have adapted well to their GPS collars
Graduate student, Jordan Dyal has been monitoring GPS-collared bucks at his study site in central Florida. As you can see in the adjacent photo, by late-May, bucks already had a lot of antler growth.
Status updates on 3 ongoing research projects
North Georgia Mountains Deer Project:
Cheyenne Yates, Adam Edge, Jackie Rosenberger and their field technicians have completed another year of deer capture on Blue Ridge and Cooper's Creek Wildlife Management Areas. They captured 47 deer. Of those, 25 were adult does, which they fitted with GPS collars, numbered ear tags and intravaginal transmitters (VITs). The does will expel the VITs when they give birth to this year's fawns. We then will use the resulting radio signals to locate and capture their fawns, so we can collar them, too. Twenty two of the 47 captured deer were bucks or last year's fawns. Those deer received only ear tags and will be used as marked samples in our deer population surveys based on trail camera photos.
GPS Fawn Collar and Acorn Preference Projects:
Zach Wesner is awaiting this year's fawn crop at the Whitehall Deer Research Facility. When fawns are born, he again will take anatomical measurements and fit a sub-sample of fawns with expandable GPS collar mock-ups. We provided the participating telemetry companies with information about fit and function of last year's collars. They made collar modifications based on our observations and Zach is eager to test the new designs. In regards to the acorn preference trials, Zach has completed his observations and is beginning to analyze data.
Deer Lab member gets married
David Osborn and Hope Callaway were married on April 28. Their ceremony was performed at the First African Baptist Church on Cumberland Island, Georgia. This tiny one-room church is a 14-mile drive from the island's southern boat dock along a narrow and bumpDavidy dirt road. The venue is best known as the wedding chapel used by John F. Kennedy, Jr. and Carolyn Bessette for their top-secret wedding in 1996. Hope's father, Reid Callaway, served as the ordained minister and photographer. Andrea Callaway served as the witness and back-up photographer.
Deer Lab members participate in QDMA Whitetail Weekend
UGA Deer Lab members had a great time at the Quality Deer Management Association's Whitetail Weekend on April 12-13. The event included presentations on many topics related to enjoying and managing whitetails including aging bucks on the hoof, predator trapping, aging deer by tooth replacement and wear, shot placement, how to tune a bow, no-till food plots, what to learn while gutting your deer, bow-range burning, how to make venison sausage, how to use a chainsaw to improve habitat, food plot seed blends and weed control, trail-camera technology, and treestand safety.
In addition, several Deer Lab members (Dr. Gino D'Angelo, Dr. Karl V. Miller and Renee Miller, James Johnson and David Osborn) played an active roll in the event by giving presentations on a variety of topics including black bears and other fawn predators, skinning and quartering deer, deboning venison, where bucks go during the rut, venison recipes and cooking tips, and tree orchards.
QDMA contributes prizes to reward respondents of deer hunter survey
The Quality Deer Management Association donated multiple items to the UGA Deer Lab to be raffled as prizes for hunters participating in a survey. As part of the North Georgia Deer Project, the Deer Lab and Georgia Department of Natural Resources are conducting a survey of hunters to study their experiences and preferences for deer management in light of declining deer populations in the mountains. Hunters who completed questionnaires were automatically entered into a drawing to win a meat grinder, fryer, luggage set, jacket, or knife.
John Eastman, QDMA Senior Director of Operations (left) and Jackie Rosenberger, UGA Deer Lab masters student (right) at the QDMA national headquarters in Athens, Georgia.
Deer Lab members received recognition at national deer conference
Zach Wesner (left) and Adam Edge (middle) were awarded First Place and Jordan Youngmann (right) was awarded Second Place in the student poster competition at the 42 Southeast Deer Study Group meeting in Louisville, Kentucky on February 17-19, 2019. Dr. Gino D'Angelo, Cheyenne Yates and Jackie Rosenberger also presented posters.
Deer Lab member celebrates birth of first child
Today, Jordan Youngmann and his wife Sarah welcomed their first child into the world at 4:30 AM. Their son weighed 7 pounds and 9 ounces (the size of a large fawn). The Deer Lab couldn't be happier for the new parents.
Deer Lab was well represented at international deer conference
The 9th International Deer Biology Congress (IDBC) was held August 5-10, 2018 at the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, Colorado. The IDBC is a gathering of professionals interested in wild deer biology, management and farmed deer production with the goal of providing a forum to discuss common problems and share knowledge and experiences. The first IDBC was held in New Zealand in 1983 and the meeting has since been hosted in the United States, United Kingdom, Hungary, Canada, Czech Republic, Chile and China.
Dr. Karl V. Miller served on the Scientific Steering Committee of the IDBC and the UGA Deer Lab was well represented at this year’s meeting. Dr. Gino D’Angelo served as Chair of a symposium on the influence of predators on deer in North America. Our faculty, staff, and graduate students presented or co-authored 12 scientific presentations and 2 scientific posters. This was a wonderful opportunity for the UGA Deer Lab to engage with other professionals in the international deer community. In this photo, Cheyenne Yates is eager to discuss her research.