Cody Purcell, district wildlife manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, reports that this winter's urban deer count conducted in and around Cedaredge totaled 508 animals. Fourteen citizen volunteers and six CPW staff members participated in the count which was conducted on Feb. 23. The deer total may have been low because the day of the count was snowy and windy and such weather tends to disperse the animals and drive them to cover.
The February count represents the early stages of CPW efforts to develop a scientific management plan to deal with the town's growing deer population. The winter count is the first of multiple counts planned for the Cedaredge area. Another count will be conducted this summer to get an idea of deer movements during diverse seasons. Data generated by the counts will help CPW adjust the size and location of counting zones and help officials get a sense of the town's resident deer population versus those animals which move in and out of the urban environment with the changing seasons.