The cost of potentially counting deer regionwide was among the issues that prompted Capital Regional District committee members to vote against pursuing a greater CRD role in deer management. (Black Press Media file photo)

The cost of potentially counting deer regionwide was among the issues that prompted Capital Regional District committee members to vote against pursuing a greater CRD role in deer management. (Black Press Media file photo)

Expanded deer management a non-starter for Greater Victoria

Capital Regional District committee maintains current level of support

After briefly floating the idea of a sub-regional deer management service, the Capital Regional District’s planning and protective services committee voted Wednesday to maintain the status quo.

The potential cost of adding to the CRD’s current public education and municipal support role, and the uncertainty of encroaching onto provincial wildlife responsibilities led committee members to maintain existing service levels.

CRD staff were asked last fall to look into ways the CRD could help avoid duplication of efforts and cost for municipalities with deer overpopulation issues – primarily Oak Bay, Esquimalt and Central Saanich. Taking a direct role on population reduction would require a new service mandate and would need CRD board approval.

RELATED STORY: Esquimalt mayor repeats call for regional approach to urban deer management

Director Rebecca Mersereau asked whether taking a greater role in deer management activities would include doing a regional population count to get baseline numbers. Kevin Lorette, general manager of planning and protective services said it would.

With the only cost estimate in the report calling for spending between $35,000 and $60,000, Oak Bay Mayor Kevin Murdoch jumped into the discussion.

“Our experience in Oak Bay, with even doing a small count, was in the neighbourhood of several tens of thousands of dollars to service the province’s requirements,” he said.

Juan de Fuca Electoral Area director Mike Hicks’ comments illustrated the urban-rural divide that often overshadow regional discussions.

“We are the largest land mass in the CRD by far, and we do not have a problem with deer, we hunt them, we shoot them,” he said. “As far as counting deer in the Juan de Fuca, that’s just absurd, it would be impossible.”

He said he could support a sub-regional service for the urban areas that need it, and some level of shared financial contributions.

Sooke Mayor Maja Tait said such a fully regional service would not fit in her area either, where people accept living with and adjusting for wildlife, “those that wander through,” as part of life.

ALSO READ: Esquimalt likely two years from starting deer birth control efforts

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes said while deer management was an issue in his 2014 election campaign, he doesn’t see a full regional approach as a good use of resources. He and Mersereau said municipalities can be more proactive in encouraging residents to better manage food source control, much in the way garbage and rotting produce are stored to avoid drawing rodents.

Rather than choosing the option of having staff canvas municipalities on what type of population reduction methods their communities support, and gauge interest in the CRD initiating a new deer management service, the committee chose to maintain the current level of support.


 

Do you have a story tip? Email:don.descoteau@blackpress.ca. Follow us on Instagram.  
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Capital Regional District

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

Visitors relax at the natural hot springs located within Maquinna Marine Provincial Park. (tofinohiking.com photo)
Maquinna Marine Provincial Park boardwalk project on track

“The walk down the two-kilometre boardwalk to the springs itself is by far one of the most incredible experiences.”

WILDLIFE TREE: Tofino Poet Laureate Christine Lowther stands next to a giant cedar tree on District Lot 114, the site of Tofino’s controversial affordable housing project. The tree was pinned with an official Ministry of Forests yellow wildlife tree sign to educate fallers that the tree needs to be left standing for food, shelter and nesting. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Tofino author Christine Lowther calling for poetry about trees

“I’m thrilled to be of service to trees through poetry.”

Tofino will elect a new mayor and two new councillors on March 6. (Westerly file photo)
Tofino’s mayoralty candidates lay out key differences

Tofino will elect a new mayor and two new councillors on March 6.

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

A boat caught fire in Ladysmith Harbour on Saturday morning. (Photo submitted)
Search underway for missing woman after boat catches fire in Ladysmith harbour

A large boat caught fire on the morning of Saturday, Feb. 27

Lone orca from a pod that made its way north from Georgia Strait and into Discovery Passage on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. Photo by Ella Smiley/<a href="https://www.facebook.com/Comoxvalleywildlifesightings/?ref=page_internal" target="_blank">Comox Valley Wildlife Sightings </a>
Island wildlife viewers thrilled by close view of passing Orca pod

Group gives wildlife photographers a classic opportunity to view them off Campbell River shoreline

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Dasher is back home with mom Christine Girvin thanks to some help from BC Ferries staff. Photo supplied
The cat came back, with help from BC Ferries staff

After Dasher made a dash, staff in Comox found her and got her home safe

Most Read