Seniors want deer culled

Penticton’s newly elected city council will hear about a perennial Penticton problem Tuesday.

A delegation from Figueira’s manufactured home park will be before council to ask for a cull of a growing population of urban deer living in the neighbourhood.

All over the park, signs of a slow moving battle between resident and deer are evident.

Hedges are either caged in chicken wire or have been eaten into mushroom formations. Lawns are dotted with droppings.

“Damage to the trees, damage to the flowers,” Nick Iannone said. “But our main concern now is the health factor of the droppings from the deer.”

Figueira’s is a 55-plus community, and Iannone says the immune systems of many seniors may be not be all that strong.

“We’ve done a lot of research and paperwork from universities in the states about — they are not cute Bambis.”

A survey of the park found 96 of 117 homes want an immediate solution to the problem, he said.

Figueira’s is surrounded by high fences and backs onto an oxbow, protecting the deer from predators and vehicles. Some are living their entire lives within the park.

“Three born behind our place,” Iannone said. “This is their territory, and all you do is just chase them from one neighbour to another and back.”

He said they are not interested in solving the entire city’s urban deer problem, but would like the municipality to apply for a licence to cull their local population.

“They’ve already been approached for two or three years as far as city wide, we are just concerned about this here.”

Bucks are also in the mix, and residents say they are worried what could happen should one become spooked.

The previous council that heard the urban deer issue had no desire to take any action. The last time a deer capture and cull was proposed in 2014, the city abandoned the issue due to costs, staff time and public opposition.

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