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Capital Region’s deer debate is getting off track
Whether or not deer were here before people is irrelevant. Today they are coming because the food is better and there are fewer serious predators.
And some wildlife biologists don’t think it is proper for deer to eat the richer urban food, as it is not natural for them.
Tribal people harvested deer for food and hides and encouraged animals by clearing underbrush and felling trees to create meadows. The practice happens near Port Angeles and in Australia. Doing so increased the quantity of animals for human use. Much of today’s suburban areas have lots of interface, with gardens as a bonus.
As for killing methods, any objector who isn’t vegetarian should ask how their meat is obtained, and how tribal peoples killed deer. They should check into the portable abattoirs.
The B.C. government’s substantive review of ways to manage deer populations found only one method to keep their numbers reasonable in urban areas – periodic culling. The report detailed how some cities harvested deer and provided the dressed meat to food banks.
Deer and their cousins are farmed in Canada and around the world, including caribou called ‘reindeer’ on the Yamal Peninsula of Russia. It seems many people here have never lacked for food.
People should be glad they don’t live where deer’s much larger cousins: elk, caribou and moose, wander into towns. Would people object to culling them?