1,000 Kelowna residents say Upper Mission deer population is out of control | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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1,000 Kelowna residents say Upper Mission deer population is out of control

Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Cassandra Anderton
July 18, 2017 - 8:00 PM

KELOWNA – More than 1,000 Kelowna residents are fed up with what they say is an exploding local deer population.

Over the 37 years Ken Walker lived on Okaview Road in the Upper Mission he’s seen thousands of deer, but the last three years have been worse than ever.

“It used to be, you’d see them periodically and it was nice,” he says. “Now they’re constantly here.”

Walker has tried every deer deterrent he can find to keep them from eating his trees and plants, but is starting to lose hope.

“The last thing we tried is take Irish Spring soap and grind it up over plants. They’re still back.”

Making things worse, he says, the City of Kelowna has been unreceptive to his concerns.

He and his supporters have canvassed their neighbourhoods and collected more than 1,000 signatures.

They are asking to simply have a dialogue with city council before drastic action has to be taken, as was the case ten years ago when the city was faced with a rapidly expanding rabbit population. After a public outcry, approximately1,500 feral rabbits had to be rescued and relocated. 

“The City really does not want the issue raised,” he says. “The deer are more of a problem than the bunnies. They do a lot more damage.”

Walker says roughly 15 per cent of neighbours he talked to are opposed to the idea of a cull – something he says will eventually be necessary.

“Fifteen per cent don’t particularly want to see Bambi killed and they are against killing animals. The rest of the people are fed up with the fact that we have to deal with this on a regular basis,” he says.

“Those 15 per cent will make a strong noise,” Walker says. “It’s an issue that those people who are opposed are going to be yelling louder than the rest of us… we want to get in front of council and have a discussion.”

“We can get more (signatures) if we need to. We are just getting their attention.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Adam Proskiw or call 250-718-0428 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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