HELENA, Mont. –The City of Helena’s Urban Wildlife Program, which is run by the Helena Police Department (HPD), is returning after a two-year absence. Starting the week of October 4, HPD will be conducting a population survey of the deer within the City limits. The survey will be conducted during evening and night hours over several weeks in October.
The count involves the HPD Urban Wildlife Program Coordinator and Officers driving a pre-determined route in the City and shining spotlights to get an accurate count of the deer. The survey will be done in a black SUV that is marked with urban wildlife signs. Counting will be done in commercial and residential neighborhoods and officers will do their best to avoid shining lights into houses and businesses.
After completing the survey, the collected data will be sent to Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Park biologists who will determine the deer per square miles through an established formula. The urban wildlife program may receive approval from MTFWP to remove deer from within the City to maintain a previously established population density of 25 deer per square mile. The 25 deer per square mile was established by Helena’s Urban Wildlife Task Force. Once the population is determined, additional information will be provided to the community what the next steps will be.