Kimberley City Bylaw reminds residents that it is not advisable to feed any wild animals after several complaints of turkeys being fed were submitted to the City in January, 2020. (Bulletin file)

Kimberley City Council discusses January bylaw, animal control reports

Bylaw is advising residents not to feed wild turkeys

Kimberley’s Bylaw and Animal Control Officer is reminding residents that feeding wild turkeys is discouraged by the City.

At a regular Council Meeting on Monday, the 2020 Bylaw and Animal Control Reports were discussed by Council, with the majority of the discussion focused on the recent influx of wild turkeys in town.

In the report, Kim Tuff, Animal Control Officer, said that she received a complaint that wild turkeys were being fed within City limits.

“While it is not against City of Kimberley Bylaw to feed wild turkeys, it is discouraged,” wrote Tuff. “Feeding wild animals is not in their best interest.”

Councillor Darryl Oakley asked staff if complaints of feeding wild turkeys would typically be brought to Conservation Officers.

READ MORE: Behold Kimberley’s albino wild turkey

CAO Scott Sommerville responded saying that most complaints of wild animals being fed would be brought to Conservation, and in this instance the CO’s did speak with the person who was feeding the wild turkeys.

Councillor Nigel Kitto asked if it would be possible to add a bylaw that includes the prohibition of feeding of wild turkeys. Currently, the City has a bylaw that prohibits the feeding of deer within City limits, or allowing deer to be fed on property. The first offence fine is $50, with each subsequent offence landing the person a fine of $500.

Sommerville explained that the process for making such a bylaw is fairly complicated, specifically because the turkeys are outside of the municipal jurisdiction.

Council agreed that City staff already have enough on their plate and that turkeys “are relatively harmless” especially compared to habituated deer or bears.

“I think we can watch and observe and we can always bring it back later [if it becomes more of an issue],” said Mayor Don McCormick.

READ MORE: Troublesome wild turkeys ruffle feathers in southeastern B.C.

Other topics included in January’s Animal and Bylaw report included, but weren’t limited to, dog licences, business licences, parking, snow removal and keeping fire hydrants clear of snow.

Tuff explained in her report that 2020 dog licences were to be renewed on January 31.

“The animal control officer would like to remind residents that licensing your dog helps to get your pet home safe and sound in the event of an accidental escape. Making sure your dogs license is on your pet’s collar is required to enable animal control to return your dog home,” wrote Tuff.

Two vehicles were towed, ticketed and impounded in January due to the fact that they interfered with snow removal. Bylaw reminds vehicle owners to observe signs that are posted for snow removal.

Finally, there were several complaints to Bylaw about residents covering fire hydrants while removing snow from their properties.

“The officer would like to remind residents it is in their best interest to keep fire hydrants clear of snow in a three-foot radius surrounding the hydrant,” wrote Tuff. “Minutes spent digging out a hydrant in the event of an emergency could be the difference between life and death.”

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