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Saddle River Deer Activists Prepare Voters For Ballot Questions

Doreen Frega of Saddle Brook gives a Saddle River shopper a flier on the dangers of bow hunting deer in the borough.
Doreen Frega of Saddle Brook gives a Saddle River shopper a flier on the dangers of bow hunting deer in the borough. Photo Credit: Lorraine Ash
Amy Atkinson, left, and Val Devine demonstrate across the street from The Commons in Saddle River Saturday afternoon.
Amy Atkinson, left, and Val Devine demonstrate across the street from The Commons in Saddle River Saturday afternoon. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dee DeSantis
Deer are a common site in the Northern Highlands town. This one was spotted in a yard in Allendale Monday.
Deer are a common site in the Northern Highlands town. This one was spotted in a yard in Allendale Monday. Photo Credit: Lorraine Ash

SADDLE RIVER, N.J. — Doreen Frega of Saddle Brook walked along East Allendale Road in Saddle River Monday with fliers that read:

“How Would Backyard Bow Hunting Affect Our Town?”

She and others from three environmental groups tried persuading residents to vote for non-lethal deer hunting on two questions on the local ballot Tuesday.

“It goes well,” Frega told Daily Voice. “There are a lot of people who do not want the deer hunted.”

The three groups, active in local issues statewide, are the Animal Protection League of New Jersey , League of Humane Voters of New Jersey, and the Bear Education And Resource (BEAR) program.

In Saddle River, they are urging voters to:

  • Vote yes on Question 1: Shall the Borough of Saddle River adopt a deer management policy by the Mayor and Council that is limited to the use of non-lethal methods only?
  • Vote no on Question 2: Shall the Borough of Saddle River adopt a deer management policy by the Mayor and Council that includes the use of lethal methods?

They claim the borough’s Wildlife Committee is predisposed to hunting.

They also say non-lethal methods of controlling the deer population are safer for people.

“In 2009, a law was passed that reduces the hunting safety zone around occupied buildings from 450 feet (a football field and a half) to a mere 150 feet,” says Keep Saddle River Safe, their website .

“Bow hunters are also not required to retrieve any razor-sharp arrows that may fall on a homeowner’s property. Should a child pick up or step on an arrow, they could become injured.”

The groups also worry that a person or pet could be mistaken for a deer and shot.

On Saturday, several other activists, including Amy Atkinson of Saddle River and Val Devine of Lake Hiawatha, carried banners as they demonstrated on the corner of East Saddle River Road and East Allendale Road, across from The Commons.

One read, “Nonlethal is Superior & Safer!”

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