Humane alternative needed for urban deer population


On October 30, an irate Oakley resident saw a male hobble along Paxton Woods Drive. The deer had an arrow in its shoulder. While searching for the injured deer, a motorist told us he had just seen two dead deer lying on the side of Beechmont Avenue, one with an arrow in its neck.

Scaring deer out of their natural habitat can be deadly. Four terrified deer were killed along a one-mile stretch of Woodford Road as they ran for their lives between October 23 and November 17. Three were hit by vehicles as they fled, reviews said. And bow hunters were active at Drake Park, which connects to Woodford Road, during this time.

Last February, a horrified resident of Pleasant Ridge saw a doe in pain with an arrow in the back. Numerous attempts to get help for the injured doe resting in her garden were unsuccessful.

On December 19, 2020, a Kennedy Heights woman, seeking tranquility and the therapeutic power of nature, took her dog for a walk in their large, partially wooded backyard. She soon saw a young male who had been shot with an arrow, then attacked and killed by coyotes. The torn innards of the deer clearly showed that it had been shot as it ate in a shelled corn baiting area used by the park’s bow hunters. The arrow had completely passed through the deer’s shoulder area. (The broken Gold Tip 425 Ballistic arrow shaft was recovered from their property, which adjoins Drake Park.)

Such incidents have been happening for years. In 2013, horrified drivers saw a doe struggling and terrified along Colerain Avenue (Mt. Airy). She had an arrow coming out of her. A traumatized young motorist who witnessed the incident staged a protest in Mt. Airy and many signatures were obtained via a petition, which was filed with Cincinnati Parks. The group received no response.

As recently as June, the new supervisor of the Cincinnati Parks Deer Killing Program gleefully told the park’s board, “The deer weren’t scared…it was like shooting at fish in a barrel.”

Mt. Airy had a lot of tame and semi-tame deer, and people used to visit Mt. Airy to see them. Thanks to open records requests, we now know that Cincinnati Parks is determined to kill our tame and semi-tame urban deer. The same speaker also denied that there were any public safety concerns. Shocking.

In North Dakota, the Fargo City Commission has voted to end its 15-year bowhunting program, despite claims “there were no incidents”. Fargo officials said, “That’s the perception of security.”

People do NOT feel safe. Finding arrows, bloodstains, rotting, dismembered deer carcasses, and injured deer are not just violations, but a level of violence that most townspeople find repugnant. There are also clearly physical and psychological security issues or incidents.

Analyzes of Cincinnati Parks’ own deer data, called the “Deer Cheat Sheet”, clearly show that they have NOT achieved their targeted deer reduction levels. Populations have actually increased. For years, Cincinnati Parks has covered up incidents, and when incidents are reported, the response is “we didn’t.” The misrepresentations of Cincinnati Parks must stop, and city officials must revoke the Chapter 708 dangerous weapons “exception” granted to Cincinnati Parks and implement the recommendations of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

We can do better.

Millie P. Schafer lives in Pleasant Ridge and is the coordinator of Cincinnati Urban Deer Advocates, a group that supports non-lethal approaches to stabilizing Cincinnati’s urban deer population and the removal of any exceptions to the city’s “No Hunting” ordinances. public”.

Millie Schaffer
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