Education on deer issues in Invermere

A recent general meeting of the District of Invermere reviews the issues deer in town present and what residents should and should not be doing.

Two deer stop and eat food spread out outside a home.

Two deer stop and eat food spread out outside a home.

The District of Invermere council gave a first and second reading to a new bylaw which will hopefully start controlling issues with the deer within the town limits

A new Deer Feeding and Wildlife Attractant Bylaw is a proposed recommendation that will prohibit the feeding of deer and attracting other wildlife within the community.

The Deer Committee which was formed to look at the problem has worked with the town to develop  a bylaw that could stem the ever growing number of deer which make the town home.

This is seen as a first step in dealing effectively with the deer population within the community.

In the bylaw it states that “The proposed bylaw will require additional enforcement based upon the information collected by the Deer Committee. Residents who place food or attract deer and wildlife to their properties will follow the District’s typical enforcement process including written warning tickets and eventually fines.”

The information provided online by the district went on to say, “The intent of the proposed bylaw is to implement new regulations within the community that will assist in reducing the deer population and human/wildlife conflicts. The proposed bylaw is intended to prevent property owners from directly feeding deer within the community.”

In their initial meeting the Deer Committee recommended that the District adopt a bylaw prohibiting the feeding of deer in the community.

The proposed bylaw is consistent with the process outlined in the Province’s Urban Ungulate Conflict Analysis Report.

In addition to the deer, the bylaw has been expanded to include other wildlife attractants, specifically to address the bear conflicts seen each year within town limits.

The bylaw introduces regulations pertaining to the attractants on private property, including garbage, bird feeders and fruit trees.

All domestic refuse must be placed in one of the following: a building, house or garage that is inaccessible to wildlife; an approved wildlife resistant container; a container that is placed in an approved wildlife resistant enclosure; or deposited at an appropriate disposal site.

All domestic refuse cannot be placed for curbside pick-up prior to 8:00 a.m. of the property’s regularly scheduled garbage pick-up day.

District of Invermere Mayor Gerry Taft said he hoped this was a good start to getting the word out to people in the community.