Concern over deer population in Hopewell Township

A New Jersey area known for it's open space and wildlife preserves now has a dilemma at least that's when some are saying. They're worried about too many deer and the impact on property not to mention a growing number of car crashes with the animals.

"They were here first," resident Jack Belmont said.

White tail deer grazing away on a wildlife preserve in Hopewell Township, New Jersey.

"Those deer were not afraid of us," Sandy Belmont said.

Apparently the deer are not afraid of much. They have no natural predator and don't even care about all the traffic zooming by, but they don't stay on their protected land.

Jack and Sandy Belmont say they protect their plants with wire and spray and place bird seed really high.

They love the deer but so many drivers, farmers, conservationists and naturalists say they're big trouble.

"In a nutshell, it's ten times too many deer," Ecologist at Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space Michael Van Clef said. "Lyme disease, something like one in four households in Hopewell, has had someone with Lyme disease."

There were hundreds of deer-involved accidents in 2016 alone.

"The forest is dying farmers are suffering huge economics losses. Let's all work together there isn't one simple solution." Executive Director at Sourland Conservancy Caroline Katmann said.