Tags: white deer | seneca army depot | developer

White Deer at Seneca Army Depot in Developers' Path

Image: White Deer at Seneca Army Depot in Developers' Path
(AP)

By    |   Monday, 16 Nov 2015 08:47 AM

The future of hundreds of white deer is uncertain now that their home near the long-decommissioned Seneca Army Depot in upstate New York is open for development bids starting next month.

According to The Associated Press, the 7,000-acre, fenced-in property has allowed the white deer to thrive since it was erected just a month before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941.

"I see white deer every day," said Lisette Wilson, who runs a farm store and bakery nearby. "They're beautiful animals. I'm very concerned they'll lose their habitat when the property is sold."

The depot, which once held bombs and ammunition, was shut down in 2000, and the Army Corps of Engineers have been conducting environmental cleanup operations on and around the site ever since.

Their cleanup will be completed by the end of next year, and the deer will clearly be affected by the site's eventual new owners.

Many local conservationists would like to see the depot turned into a world-class tourist attraction, which would both provide some protection for the deer and be a boon to the local economy. In particular, The Nature Conservancy is actively looking into possible preservation plans with some consideration for human outdoor recreation.

"When we ran bus tours on a limited basis between 2006 and 2012, we had people come from all over the United States to see the deer," said Dennis Money of Seneca White Deer Inc. "People are enchanted by them."

Seneca White Deer has launched a fundraising drive in hopes of buying part of the depot, if not the whole thing.

"They're a huge tourist attraction," said Wilson. "People are astonished. It's quite the spectacle for them."

Wilson said her store's most popular product is "White Deer Poop," a confection made of white chocolate, almonds, and cranberries.

The deer themselves are not albino, but are leucistic, lacking pigment only in their fur.

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The future of hundreds of white deer is uncertain now that their home near the long-decommissioned Seneca Army Depot in upstate New York is open for development bids starting next month.
white deer, seneca army depot, developer
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2015-47-16
Monday, 16 Nov 2015 08:47 AM
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