ROMULUS, N.Y. (WETM) – The DEC said it recently settled a case with an unnamed hunter accused of baiting and killing one of the rare Seneca White Deer near Romulus.
According to the DEC, the case started in November 2022 when a hunter reported seeing a white deer cape and antlers at an Oswego taxidermy shop, recognizing it was one of the Seneca White Deer. The deer are often seen on private land and on trail cameras in Romulus, the DEC said.
A landowner and the hunter who saw the rack then called the DEC to find out if someone poached the deer illegally.
Through a months-long investigation, the DEC its officers tracked down a hunter who they didn’t name and said he took the deer on land next to the private property. The DEC report said that the hunter showed officers where he shot the deer, passing two bags of feed along the way.
According to the DEC, the hunter claimed he didn’t know how the bags of feed got there, but trail cameras reportedly showed the hunter and someone else placing the bags there and the white deer eating from them.
The hunter then admitted to baiting the deer in order to poach it, the DEC said. He was charged with illegally taking a deer, hunting with the aid of bait, and intentionally feeding deer. The case has been settled with a Consent Order; the hunter paid $650 in penalties and the antlers were given to the DEC.
The Seneca White Deer are an isolated herd effectively fenced in by the former Seneca Army Depot. According to Deer Haven Park, a company that offers tours of the Depot and sightseeing of the deer, the newest owner of the property set aside 3,000 acres as a preserve for the deer.