Monitoring the urban herd

Results of Cranbrook's latest deer count released.

Our ungulate neighbours in Cranbrook seem to be keeping a relatively low profile.

At Monday night’s regular Council meeting, Mayor Wayne Stetski read out the results of two recent counts of urban deer.

A count conducted November 18 by volunteers and members of the Cranbrook deer committee turned up 96 deer, both mule deer and white tails. A second count conducted December 2 found 75, though poorer weather on that day may have resulted in the lower count.

Coun. Bob Whetham is a member of the deer committee, along with Coun. Angus Davis. Whetham took part in the counts. “I feel like I’m getting to know those animals personally,” he said during his Councillor’s Report, to some laughter.  Whetham said one of those animals was a buck, with a string of Christmas tree lights wrapped up in his antlers, maybe acquired when the deer was feeding off an ornamental cedar tree. Whetham cautioned residents to keep the deer in mind when stringing up Christmas lights outdoors.

Cranbrook culled 25 deer in 2012. Kimberley culled 99. Decisions to conduct culls next year are up in the air, pending results of further counts and the result of lawsuit launched against the District of Invermere. A cull which started there only took 20 animals before a court injunction stopped it.