THURMONT, Md. (AP) — National Park Service sharpshooters are taking aim at white-tailed deer in Catoctin Mountain Park near Thurmont.

The hunt that is scheduled to begin Monday marks the fifth round of a herd-reduction program that park managers say has eliminated 812 deer since 2010. The program is intended to reduce tree damage from a deer herd that the park service says is too big.

Conventional hunting is prohibited in the park, so federal sharpshooters do the work.

Park managers say they donated about 3,600 pounds of venison to food banks last year.

The program calls for more than 2,000 deer to be killed over 15 years.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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