by Arne Petryshen - Cranbrook Daily Townsman
posted Jul 17, 2014 at 9:03 AM
Cranbrook will be applying for a wildlife permit to cull up to 50
deer in 2014. Council approved the move, which directs city
administration to apply for the permit through the Ministry of
Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.
Mayor Wayne Stetski was quick to point out at the Monday, July 14
meeting, that even if the permits are granted, it would likely be up
to the next sitting council to approve any culls, as there is a
municipal election coming in November.
"The way I read this one is even if council decides tonight
to approve the request for up to 50 deer, for permits that are
required, it does not mean that that is going to happen," he
"Potentially the decision to cull or not cull may very well
be a decision of the next mayor and council," said Stetski.
Coun. Bob Whetham said these are basically the recommendations
that came out of the Cranbrook Urban Deer Management deer survey
conducted in May. Whetham sits on the committee. The survey pointed
to a majority of residents wanting the city to reduce the urban deer
"I think the message is pretty strong that they are asking
for support from council to try to do something to mitigate the
problem," Whetham said. "Previously we found that all the
reported — or nearly all the reported — incidents with aggression
involved people with dogs. This time we found that there were people
reporting aggressive behaviour even when they didn't have dogs.
That's something new to us and I think that's something we have to
He said the options available to manage deer are still limited, as
the only option currently sanctioned by the province is culling.
Mayor Stetski noted that he is on a committee looking at
translocation of deer.
"Whether or not that would happen this fall, we're still
trying to work through some of the details on it," Stetski said.
"There certainly is an interest in trying two translocation
projects in the East Kootenay involving two communities of which
Cranbrook would be one of them. That potentially would have 20
animals move from each of these two communities."
Stetski said it is preliminary at this time and may not happen
before October or November.
In the report, the urban deer committee noted that it believes
another deer count would be necessary in 2014 prior to conducting any
population reduction measures. The province has also purchased 10 new
clover trap frames and heavy netting to replace the traps vandalized
in Kimberley and Cranbrook earlier this year.
CAO Wayne Staudt said to his understanding, the city would just be
applying for the permits and not required to do a cull.
"You need to get in line for these permits and get in line
for the administrative process," Staudt said.
Coun. Diana J. Scott said council did get a lot of support from
residents for further deer control measures.
"If we don't apply for one and don't get it, then want to do
one, we're hooped," Scott said.