The issue of who is responsible for translocated deer showing up in other communities is yet to be settled. (Becky Phillips file).

Kimberley Mayor discusses urban deer issues with Minister Donaldson

Mayor Don McCormick is recently returned from a week in Victoria, where he discussed a variety of issues concerning Kimberley with a Minister and ministry staff.

The first meeting was with Forests, Lands, Natural Resources Operations and Rural Development Minister Doug Donaldson, and the first topic discussed was the continuing issue of urban deer.

Kimberley has decided not to translocate deer this year, partially because of numbers being down in the fall count, and partially because of the continuing impasse on responsibility for those translocated deer.

READ MORE:Kimberley to deal with translocated deer that migrated to Canal Flats

“Local staff (FLNRORD) insist Kimberley is responsible for translocated deer who wander into other communities,” McCormick said. “That’s just a non-starter to us. So we are at an impasse with the local folks on that. The good news is that we had a low deer count this year so we don’t have to do anything urgently.”

READ MORE: No deer to be translocated from Kimberley this year

McCormick says that from Kimberley’s point of view, translocation has been a success.

“It’s not perfect, but nothing is ever perfect. For us, translocation is the best option.”

McCormick says he is looking forward to seeing the final recommendations out of the years long Deer Translocation study.

“The Minister was understanding. He’d been briefed. I am hopeful we can get to a mutual agreement on who is responsible for translocated deer next fall.

“If range deer wander into a community, why wouldn’t translocated deer do the same thing?”

The other concern, McCormick says is that local FLNRORD staff believe some of the deer are completely habituated to living within a community. Some deer may be habituated, he says but they need to be identified.

“COs deal with problem deer. If a translocated deer is a problem, why can’t the COs deal with it?”

And if other translocated deer, now wandering with range deer, show up in a community, and are not aggressive, the only thing that distinguishes them is that they are wearing collars, McCormick says.

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