Controversy brews over deer population control efforts

WASHINGTON (WJLA) - Controversy continues to brew over population control efforts for white tailed deer in Rock Creek Park.

According to a statement released by the National Park Service, the white tailed deer population has grown so large it is now impacting the growth of the forest in Rock Creek Park.

After years of planning, Tara Morrison, the superintendent of Rock Creek Park, has said the action for deer reduction would begin in January and last through March. One of the methods of reduction is sharpshooting.

"We feel that killing deer in Rock Creek Park is not good land management, it's last resort management," said Carol Grunewald.

Grunewald has been a member of Save the Rock Creek Park Deer for nearly five years. The group is gathering to protest the sharpshooting Sunday.

The National Park Service said it is taking extra precautions during the sharpshooting by closing roads and working with local police.

Last spring, sharpshooters killed 20 deer, reducing the park's deer population by about 10 percent.

To read more about the deer management plan, visit the National Park Service website at