Feral deer

Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, 2011

About the fact sheet

Deer were introduced into Australia from Europe in the 19th century as game animals. Deer are a major emerging pest problem, causing damage both to the natural environment and agricultural businesses. Populations are expanding and deer are invading new areas.

Feral deer can have major impacts in parks and reserves by:

  • destroying native vegetation by trampling plants, grazing, and ring-barking young trees
  • fouling waterholes
  • causing soil erosion
  • spreading weeds
  • potentially transmitting diseases such as foot-and-mounth disease.

Further information