A question of ownership

City wants provincial count of ungulate numbers in watershed

Earlier this month Kimberley City Council received a report on water quality in its two watersheds — Matthew and Mark Creeks — from its contractor Aqua-Tex.

The report contained a number of recommendations, which the City’s Manager of Operations, Mike Fox, responded to at Council’s request.

When Council received the report this week, one recommendation caught their eye.

The Aqua-Tex report had indicated that ungulate numbers appeared to be rising in the watershed, which then brings concern about rising coliform levels in the water. Fox wrote that control of wildlife in the watershed may become necessary. “The City can keep an eye on wildlife in the area and see if the counts continue to increase.”

Coun. Darryl Oakley, who sits on the Urban Deer Committee, questioned where the information on wildlife numbers was coming from, and also whether the City should take any ownership at all over keeping an eye on it.

“I feel we should get an accurate wildlife population estimate from the Ministry,” he said. “Wildlife is not our jurisdiction. The City could be taking on something with considerable costs.”

“It’s a good suggestion,” said Mayor Ron McRae. “Around issues of deer management the more data we can collect from provincial resources, the better. It’s a great opportunity to make the case as to who owns the deer.”