When the county assumed responsibility for the game preserve in 1935, it was home to 98 bison, 78 Wapiti elk, and 269 Virginia deer. Much has changed in the ensuing 70+ years since the General set about preserving these once- endangered species. Nationwide efforts to restore bison, elk, and deer, of which General Trexler's games preserve was a part, have been extremely successful. Buffalo are now considered livestock. Elk roam freely in north central Pennsylvania, as they do in the western states in the USA. White-tailed deer herds have been replenished to the point that many Pennsylvanians consider the animal to be too abundant. Legally, the deer at the Trexler Nature Preserve belong to the citizens of Pennsylvania and are regulated by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
Because of the success over the years of game management agencies in Pennsylvania and across the USA, the game preserve's original purpose, protecting endangered elk, bison, and deer species, has been accomplished. In light of this success, in 2004 Lehigh County decided to open the entire 1,108-acre preserve to the public. An ecological inventory and assessment was completed and a master site plan was created to determine how to best accomplish the goal. The County, in partnership with the Trexler Trust, the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Wildlands Conservancy, has made the improvements and adaptations required to open the Trexler Nature Preserve to the general public. The County, along with our valued partners, continues to make enhancements to the Trexler Nature Preserve to improve access and the user experience.