Oak regeneration has been declining throughout the northeastern U.S. for several decades. Several factors have been hypothesized to lead to the decline, including deer herbivory and fire suppression, which allows fire intolerant species to compete for resources and has led to the development of denser forests with more shade. This study was conducted to assess the light conditions under which oak saplings thrive, and thereby improve oak seedling management. The task was completed using seedlings from a deer browse study commissioned by the city of Ann Arbor. Oak seedlings were studied in several parks around Ann Arbor, Michigan, containing 10-20 pairs of fenced and unfenced oak seedlings. Light, percentage ground cover, and understory/canopy plants were measured to infer plant health and environmental conditions. We discovered that dense shade from either overstory or understory trees, as well as dense understory competition, affects oak seedling health.