Controlled deer hunt introduced to city of Thunder Bay
Designed to deal with the city’s large deer concentration issue, Thunder Bay’s first-ever deer hunt will begin this Saturday, September 1st.
“Deer density affects public safety, negatively impacts other wildlife, and affects the health of existing deer herds,” said Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters first vice president, Glen Rivard, when the deer hunt was approved. “Our valuable deer resources will no longer be wasted on our roads, but will be utilized by hunters,” he added.
According to 2008 study released by a major insurance company, nine out of every 10 vehicle collisions in Canada involving large animals are with white-tailed deer. In addition, the Thunder Bay area was home to up to 850 deer/vehicle collisions in 2010, which resulted in more than 40 injuries.
However, the hunt does come with some apprehension. During an open house hosted by the city last week, residents of the area expressed concern about hunters who may trespass on private property, and also raised questions about hunter safety in treestands, liability and law enforcement.
An “urban deer hunt,” such as the one set for Thunder Bay, has taken place for eight years in the community of Duluth, Minnesota. However, in Duluth, hunters must pass a proficiency test and get advanced national certification before participating. While procedures such as these aren’t necessary to take part in the Thunder Bay hunt, the OFAH will be holding a seminar on bow hunting early in the month, and city officials will be closely monitoring and dealing with any potential issues as they arise. According to reports, an official with Duluth’s deer hunt says residents of the community haven’t had any issues with it, and their only complaint is that they’d like more deer to be taken out of the city.
The hunt in Thunder Bay, which will take place in rural and semi-rural areas within the city limits, will last until December 15, 2012. For tips on how to get a suburban buck, check out our guide to hunting deer in the city.