Kimberley will pursue translocation permit

Deer are tagged as part of the East Kootenay translocation trial.

Deer are tagged as part of the East Kootenay translocation trial.

While Cranbrook Council voted five to two in favour of a cull of 50 deer this winter, Kimberley will not be following suit.

Kimberley will continue to pursue a permit to translocate deer, says Mayor Don McCormick.

“Technically, it’s true that a kill cull is the only option,” he said. “Translation is considered a pilot. Nothing sits on the provincial books saying it’s available as an option.”

Still, McCormick says the translocation report from Ian Adams and Vast Resources is not yet finalized.

“It’s about to be, in fact it may be in government hands now. But in the meantime, no decision has been made on whether translocation works or not, or whether tweaking it a bit could make it effective.”

McCormick says the Kimberley contingent at the Union of British Columbia Municipalities had a very positive meeting with Minister Donaldson of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) in September.

“We talked specifically about translocation,” McCormick said. “We’re pretty sure our numbers (deer count) are high this year.They were last year.”

The City contingent talked about getting a permit for translocation for this coming winter.

“At the time, the Minister couldn’t make a decision because the report wasn’t in. But we have been talking with staff about what it would take to get a licence.”

The Mayor says they may have an answer in a week or two.

“I’m confident we have support from the Ministry.”

McCormick did say the situations in Kimberley and Cranbrook were very different.

“I don’t want to criticize or second guess what Cranbrook is doing. Our approach is that translocation is a viable option. We will push forward until a decision has been made that it’s not.”

carolyn.grant@kimberleybulletin.com