To the editor:
I write in response to Suzanne Pugh’s eloquent and humane solution to living with urban deer (Deer culls don’t work, Kelowna Capital News, July 25).
I have lived in the upper mission since 1981 and we never had urban deer problems until after the 2003 wild fires. Her suggestion that we should educate ourselves to live with urban deer is ridiculous. First of all, we should not have urban deer any more than we should have urban cougar, urban wolfs, or urban bear. Deer are extremely destructive, a hazard on the roads, and a danger to people. Having lived here for 36 years I do not have to do a count to know that the deer population is out of control. I see them every day, and have had as many as 13 in my front yard one morning.
What is wrong with killing deer, having them properly butchered, and fed to the needy. We have been doing this for hundreds of years. Now Suzanne wants to domesticate them and make pets out of them. Her idea would create a lot jobs though, perhaps one for herself. Besides that, it would take years, and cost millions of dollars. She says that she consulted with her neighbours, and the consensus is for a humane education plan. Well, we have collected more than 1,000 signatures, and 85 percent of the people we approached thanked us immensely for taking the effort to do this petition.
While Steve Thompson was still the minister in charge of wildlife management, we met with him on several occasions. He was totally in agreement that something has to be done. However, before it can happen it must be initiated by the city. As this is surely a contentious issue, the city is in denial that we have a problem. Hopefully this petition will get them to take their heads out of the sand, and acknowledge the problem. And I surely hope that we don’t build another retirement home up in East Kelowna like we did for the bunnies. We are still paying something like $6,000 a year to look after them, until they die a natural death.
Frank Bechard, Kelowna