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Sidney Island Deer

Investigating the Parks Canada deer slaughter on Sidney Island.

WHERNTO: righton  operate 

image of Sidney Island Deer

In 2023 Parks Canada decided to slaughter all deer on Sidney Island British Columbia. This page provides information, resources, and updates on what is an unethical process on many levels. Sign the petition to Save the Sidney Island deer. The page is still in construction.

Letter to Stephanie Coulson, Parks Canada (request for public input)

Hi Stephanie!

Good stuff on the "Role of education, curiosity, and exploration in conservation" article for Raincoast. I read it with some interest having been an educator myself and helped to start Students Towards Environment Protection (some decades ago in our school). I found your 'culture of conservation' a rather intriguing concept!

My compliments on the thoroughness of the SIERP DIA - both scope and detail. Coastal Conservation has certainly created a detailed paper. It is good to see such a strong emphasis on mitigation and I'm sure that element will make many people feel good.

However, the credibility of the enterprise raises eyebrows considering that Coastal Conservation's Head, Gregg Howald, is also the chair of SIERP. Why would Park's Canada de-legitimize its own credibility by cahooting such an arrangement, especially since it was internally advised of this blatant conflict of interest:

"If CC gains financially or otherwise in some way from an approved eradication going forward, then [the Chair] should not be running the show – it’s a conflict of interest." (FOI p306). I'm sure you are aware of the notorious FOI.

Beyond this guffaw, emerges the following issues:

1. Exactly how is shooting deer by the methods detailed in SIERP considered humane?

It isn't humane and here's why:

  • Helicopters and hunting dogs cause potential victims severe stress and fear!
  • Trained marksmen miss! In fact, often attempts at being humane require backtracking to shoot fallen/wounded deer multiple times.)
  • Outright violation of animal welfare! Specifically #10 of Wildlife and Rodent Control Standards "Lethal Methods are only be used when an animal’s presence is an ongoing threat to human health and safety" (FOI p389)
  • You wouldn't do this to your dog or cat! Euthanasia may be humane, but this sort of slaughter just isn't.

2. Was sterilization even considered seriously as an alternative?

It seems as though due diligence has not been done in this area. The readily accessible information shows that:

  • It is humane! We keep dog and cat populations under control this way.
  • It is cost effective in the longer term! Even if full eradication takes place, there is no guarantee of remaining deer-free and "Over time, the cumulative costs of sharpshooting outweigh the costs of surgical sterilization …" (Deer Population Control Methods – Cost & Effectiveness Comparison, Trapp)
  • It has been successful! There is evidence of effectiveness such as this article about White Buffalo Inc DeNicola's activities which points out "Sterilization was controversial in San Jose because it worked … Some residents freaked out, worrying they’d lost too many deer", as does (DeNicola's) more academic, Sterilization as an alternative deer control technique: a review "In an increasing number of communities, however, lethal management strategies are rejected … Surgical sterilization is scale-limited based on the ability to capture and sterilize 80% or more of the female deer …"

3. What about GonaZonaSpayva?

Fertility control drugs have been used successfully for many years, so there is historical evidence demonstrating effectiveness:

  • Gonacon, Zonastat-D, Spayvac pZP do work (despite the naysayers' chanting)
  • Fertility control can be, however, the most expensive route as per Cost & Effectiveness link above
  • The usual whine about these being 70% or so effective is flawed:

    • it isn't correct, since some studies demonstrated 100% (eg Fraker et al and more recently Botstiber)
    • it doesn't matter, because you don't need 100% efficacy to get the restoration job done (everyone knows this including the Chair of SIERP "the numbers of deer on the Island have been reduced dramatically and the impacts of fallow deer are not really obvious …" FOI p219 item h)
    • that the number of deer is indeed low is also confirmed by the Gulf Islands National Park Reserve Superintendent, Kate Humble: "… said while the number of fallow deer is currently relatively low" (AlaskaHighway News).

4. Are Fallow deer really an invasive species?

Not anymore. They were brought to James Island in 1902 and got to Sidney Island by 1960, so they've been here a while. They no more an invasive species than Europeans or Asians are now to Canada. We should take into account that:

  • the ecosystem has adapted to accommodate them on Sidney Island for 60+ yrs. As a Parks Canada ecological specialist writes (Ethics section of Freedom of Information Request): "… we could consider them naturalized and work to maintain the species …"
  • suddenly removing them, may not go well, despite all those the mitigation measures that appear so voluminously in SIERP
  • killing them all off in one place also doesn't mean that they won't come back from another. Even though SIERP claims that accounts of fallow deer swimming between Southern Gulf Islands in the 1930s is unsubstantiated … did they take the ferry then? … but this 2013 Times Colonist article by Judith Lavoie certainly indicate that they are fine swimmers.

5. Why can the deer population not be reduced through non-lethal means over a period of time?

Well it can, but certain factions for yet-to-be determined reasons don't want to do it that way. Some of these objections are:

  • the current population continues to have a negative impact on the ecosystem EXCEPT it's unclear how that can be when the population is so low as per above indications by Howald and Humble
  • relocation would transfer the problem elsewhere EXCEPT it is unclear whether the 'elsewhere' would necessarily see these deer as a problem
  • contraceptives wouldn’t achieve Parks Canada’s goal in a timely way EXCEPT one has no idea what that is actually supposed to mean or why it should be so
  • considered sterilization and contraceptives, but these techniques do not allow for the removal of the population, which is the objective EXCEPT we have been led to believe that the objective was, in Humble's own words there, "focus of this work is the restoration of a healthy ecosystem"

6. Guffaws Galore!

The above 5 points illustrate what seems to be a considerable disregard for science and ethics, but the behaviors highlighted by the FOI and various comments by 'interested' parties, make matters worse:

  • PC's Emily Gonzales, Ecological Scientist asks about evidence for the SIERP claim that the deer population is "4 times greater than a healthy ecosystem can support" and goes on to say "I realize it would be nice to be able to make statements like this and you will be pressured by your managers … That doing so is something you'll regret because they aren't defensible values and don't even make ecological sense …" (FOI p537). Later she adds about another statement, "I provide advice/feedback and some key problematic issues (IMO) keep showing up … my head and the wall are hurting."(FOI p538). [A painful head is quite understandable at this point.]
  • PC's Michael Janssen, Forest Ecosystem Restoration Manager, on consideration of alternatives was met with this curious response (FOI p445) from Howald "If the purpose and need of the project is to eradication fallow deer to facilitate natural restoration … then you can narrow your alternatives dramatically … This way people see you considered them, but dismissed them because they don't meet the P/N." [So why is this starting to feel like a Machiavellian con-job?]
  • Continuing on from the 'impacts of fallow deer are not really obvious' we have from Howald's notes (FOI p219): "it is unlikely that the BENEFIT of the eradication efforts will be clear on implementation. We need to consider how to bring out the BENEFIT side … One way we could do that is a mix of citizen science, or very targetted restoration potential … May be it is using peoples vegetable gardens or flower beds …" [A lemon car sales pitch?]
  • And we gotta keep it going forever and ever (see Biosecurity section in Freedom of Information Request): The CC Proposal advises: “It is important the biosecurity plan be maintained as needed in perpetuity because the long-term benefit of fallow deer removal to the biodiversity of Sidney Island will depend on continued project support from Parks Canada, Sallas, and the public to maintain a deer free island”. (page 139) [It'll never end because bio-insecurity can be made eternal.]
  • Speaking of cars, let's look at insurance "The key to this is that we are not taking on the liability, we are transferring liability to those who have insurance." … "private landowners must rely on the insurance of the hunters rather than Coastal Conservation or any indemnity from Canada. This would be described in an “access agreement” with owners.". [So this sounds like a way to force all landowners to comply? You're with us or outaluck!]
  • What about the number of deer? From Parks Canada we get the extraordinarily bizarre "Parks Canada says the current fallow deer population is unknown but estimates between 300 and 900." [Is this for real? Unknown or 300-900?! Did Parks Canada do the computations for Russia's Luna-25?]
  • What about the landowners? 50 yea, 46 nay, 3 abstained, 11 absent which means 46+3+11=60 (54.5%) DID NOT say yea. That's not even close to the 75% approval required by law. [So if the residents' rights are upheld, there can be no slaughter, right? … Unless an exception is suddenly made to push through whatever agenda.]
  • To confuse the waters, we have Sidney Island resident, Michael Parfit (of Saving Luna fame), supporting the slaughter with sweeping statements like "Sidney Island can become an example of healthy ecosystems that can exist in British Columbia but have almost all vanished. It could show us what our province once was and could be again." which seems to pre-suppose that slaughter is the only route and that everything is the deers' fault. He belittles the obvious conflict of interest issue with the peculiar argument that we need "best talent for both planning and execution" which seems to miss the point of conflict of interest and its ramifications. He notes the irony that "though a majority of owners voted for the cull [they did??!!] , the most intense hunters are allying themselves in opposition with activists who care about keeping animals alive. Ironic? Yeah." [Well yeah, Michael! When you have 2 diametrically opposing groups allying against you, we can be assured you are doing something really wrong! After all, it took something really wrong in Ukraine to bring together the Republicans and Democrats!]
  • And what about this seeking public input? According to Kate Humble: "the goal of asking for public feedback is not to determine whether the cull goes ahead but to get input on reducing negative impacts." [Gee thx a lot Kate! The public can input, but who cares!]


So based on my research above, I come to these conclusions about this initiative:

  • it is hugely expensive and a burden on taxpayers
  • it is unquestionably inhumane
  • it is backed by insufficient/incorrect attempts at biological/ecological science
  • it stinks of deception, arrogance, and high-handedness (similar to the toxic soil fiasco in Shenanigan Lake some years ago)
  • it has the inappropriate goal of eradication rather than restoration (despite pretenses)
  • it should spend the 6 million on a good PR company instead of eradicators

Oh then there's those conflict of interest fumes which pervade who knows where. Possibly we should rename Parks Canada to Perks Canada!

Anyway, thank you Stephanie for receiving my input on the matter and best wishes on your endeavors.

In friendship,
Prad Basu

Resource summaries and sites

Below listed in alphabetical order are links and summaries of webpages and sites relating to various aspects of the deer and general conservation issues. The resources are encompass areas such as animal welfare, conservation, management, and restoration. Many of the items have been referenced in the letter to Parks Canada.

(The summaries were mostly done by though one item Eradication and Restoration Options On Sidney Island has summaries produced by harpa, bing, and perplexity.)

Animal Alliance of Canada Opposed to Parks Canada Sidney Island Deer Eradication Plan

### Key Takeaway The Animal Alliance of Canada opposes Parks Canada's plan to eradicate fallow deer on Sidney Island using aerial gunning and dog harassment, considering it unjustified, inhumane, and expensive.

### Summary

  • Parks Canada plans to eradicate fallow deer on Sidney Island through aerial gunning and dog harassment.
  • Sidney Island is part of Gulf Islands National Park and has around 100 lots overseen by a strata corporation.
  • Fallow deer were introduced to the island in 1908 for hunting, leading to a population growth to 3000 deer by the early 2000s.
  • About 2000 deer were killed in the 2000s, and current estimates suggest the population is around 300.
  • A UBC report from five years ago indicated a 30% improvement to the ecosystem since the peak population.
  • AAC West Coast Campaign Director Jordan Reichert questions Parks Canada's claim that the ecosystem isn't regenerating and the current deer population isn't sustainable.
  • Parks Canada aims to spend $5.9 million on the eradication program, similar to a past $6 million effort in Haida Gwaii.
  • Jordan Reichert criticizes the program as unethical, unjustified, and excessively expensive.
  • The Sidney Island Deer Management Society opposes the eradication program and questions its justification and contract award process.
  • The Animal Alliance of Canada aims to hold Parks Canada and other stakeholders accountable for their actions.

Animal welfare outcomes of helicopter-based shooting of deer in Australia

### Key Takeaway The study evaluates the animal welfare outcomes of helicopter-based deer shooting in Australia, highlighting the importance of using multiple shots in the head or thorax for better welfare results.

### Summary

  • Helicopter-based shooting is commonly used for deer control in Australasia.
  • The study assesses the animal welfare outcomes of this method in Australia.
  • It examines the fates of observed deer, procedure durations, and bullet wound details.
  • Shots were fired at 69-76% of observed deer, with variable chase times (73-145 seconds) and time to insensibility (17-37 seconds).
  • On average, deer had 1.43-2.57 bullet wounds per animal.
  • Animal welfare outcomes were better for fallow deer operations compared to chital deer operations.
  • Shooting procedures with multiple shots into the head or thorax yielded improved animal welfare outcomes.
  • The study suggests the need for a national-level standard operating procedure to enhance animal welfare in helicopter-based deer shooting operations in Australia.

Anthropomorphism Favors Coexistence, Not Deadly Domination

### Key Takeaway The research indicates that anthropomorphism, attributing human traits and emotions to nonhuman entities, challenges traditional wildlife management approaches and promotes coexistence over domination in human-animal relationships. [Mark Bekoff in Psychology Today]

### Summary

  • Anthropomorphism involves attributing human traits, emotions, or intentions to nonhuman entities.
  • Traditional wildlife management is rooted in a domination ideology, but anthropomorphism challenges this perspective.
  • Anthropomorphism helps understand the behavior, emotions, and cognitive lives of nonhuman animals from their perspective.
  • Growing research supports accurate interpretations of nonhuman thoughts and feelings, debunking the notion of animals merely acting "as if."
  • The use of human languages in discussing animal cognition and emotions, when done critically and biocentrically, respects animals' viewpoints.
  • Anthropomorphism's acceptance varies geographically, with people in Hawaii being more anthropomorphic than those in South Dakota.
  • Anthropomorphism is linked to favoring mutualism and coexistence rather than domination in human-wildlife interactions.
  • A shift in people's values regarding nature and wildlife management has occurred due to increasing acceptance of anthropomorphism.
  • Anthropomorphism stimulates value shifts and challenges traditional wildlife management approaches, emphasizing individual animal consideration.
  • Compassionate conservation emphasizes that each individual's life matters, regardless of their utility to humans.
  • Anthropomorphism has the potential to aid conservation efforts by promoting empathy and considerate practices.
  • Anthropomorphism, when properly applied, can support the conservation of a broad array of nonhuman species.
  • The field of cognitive ethology, studying animal minds, has much research potential, revealing animals' rich and deep emotions.
  • Understanding and appreciating animals as individuals can aid conservation efforts for the benefit of current and future generations.
  • Inappropriate anthropomorphism can be mitigated through detailed studies of animal minds and emotions.
  • Anthropomorphism reflects an accurate way of knowing animal emotions and is supported by scientific research.
  • The Anthropocene necessitates recognizing animals' emotions and using knowledge for ethical decisions.
  • Animals' emotions are gifts shared with humans, and recognizing this aids ethical decisions for their well-being.
  • Anthropomorphism promotes empathy, coexistence, and understanding in human-animal relationships.

(Note: The above summary is based on the content provided and aims to capture the key points and ideas presented in the web page.)

Assessment of humaneness using gunshot targeting the brain and cervical spine for cervid depopulation under field conditions

### Key Takeaway The study assessed the humaneness of using gunshot targeting the brain and cervical spine for cervid (deer) depopulation under field conditions. The results demonstrate that targeting the brain or upper cervical spine effectively achieves euthanasia standards, while lower cervical spine shot placement is not as humane.

### Summary The study aimed to evaluate the accuracy and humaneness of gunshot placement on Philippine deer during depopulation activities for meeting AVMA standards of euthanasia under field conditions. Here are the key findings and aspects of the study:

  • Objective: The study aimed to assess the humaneness of gunshot placements for cervid depopulation under field conditions.
  • Method: Firearms, specifically a suppressed .223 caliber rifle, were used for euthanizing deer from distances of 10–125 m. Shot placements were targeted at the brain and upper cervical spine (C1—C3) for immediate incapacitation.
  • Results:

    • Deer shot in the brain or upper cervical spine (C1—C3) died instantly due to the destruction of brain or spinal tissue.
    • Shot placements were accurate, with deviations within 1.9 cm from the point of aim (POA).
    • Targeting of the lower cervical vertebrae (C4—C7) was accurate but did not result in immediate insensibility, indicating that it's not a humane option.
  • Physiological Responses:

    • Deer shot in the brain or upper cervical spine showed immediate cessation of heart rate, respiration, ocular reflexes, and post-mortem spasms.
  • Secondary Objective:

    • The study aimed to determine if upper cervical spine shot placement could result in euthanasia.
    • Upper cervical spine shot placement (C1—C3) showed accuracy and immediate insensibility, making it an alternative target site when brain targeting is not optimal.
    • Lower cervical spine shot placement (C4—C7) was accurate but did not result in immediate insensibility, suggesting it's not a humane choice.
  • Significance:

    • The study provides evidence-based research on acceptable euthanasia methods using firearms for wildlife management.
    • It highlights the importance of achieving humane death even when practical limitations exist.
    • The findings emphasize the importance of targeting the brain or upper cervical vertebrae for deer depopulation under field conditions.

The research contributes to improving wildlife professionals' firearm practices and supports the interests of animal welfare, wildlife professionals, and the public in achieving humane depopulation while accomplishing management objectives.

At $10K per deer, critics question cost of Sidney Island eradication plan

### Key Takeaway The cost of the Sidney Island eradication plan for European fallow deer, priced at $10,000 per deer, has raised concerns and criticism.

### Summary

  • Eradication Plan Overview

    • Parks Canada is executing a plan to eliminate the European fallow deer population on Sidney Island.
    • The eradication plan is conducted in phases.
  • Phase Completion

    • The first phase of the eradication plan has been concluded this month.
  • Criticism on Cost

    • Critics express concern over the high cost associated with the plan.
    • The price tag for eliminating each deer is $10,000.
  • Public Opinion

    • The article doesn't provide a clear perspective on public opinion.
    • It would be valuable to understand how the local community feels about the eradication plan and its costs.
  • Parks Canada's Perspective

    • The report doesn't elaborate on Parks Canada's justification for the high cost.
    • Including this perspective could provide a more balanced view of the situation.
  • Environmental Impact

    • The article doesn't discuss the potential environmental impact of the deer population and its eradication.
    • Understanding the ecological rationale behind the plan would enhance the report.
  • Future Phases

    • Details about the subsequent phases of the eradication plan are not provided.
    • A comprehensive summary should include information about the entire plan for context.
  • Conclusion

    • The article highlights concerns about the cost of the Sidney Island deer eradication plan.
    • A more thorough analysis, including different perspectives and potential ecological benefits, is needed for a comprehensive understanding.

A systematic review of ground-based shooting to control overabundant mammal populations

### Key Takeaway Ground-based shooting can be an effective tool for managing overabundant wildlife populations, but careful planning, clear objectives, and adequate resources are essential for success.

### Summary

  • Context: The web page discusses the use of ground-based shooting as a method to manage invasive or overabundant wildlife populations. It highlights that while this method is widely used, its effectiveness varies, and a systematic examination of its efficiency is lacking.
  • Aims:

    • The review aimed to assess the efficacy of ground-based shooting as a population management tool.
    • It sought to identify commonalities among studies to help managers determine situations where ground-shooting is most likely to be effective.
  • Key Results:

    • Most studies lacked clear quantifiable objectives for their shooting operations.
    • 60% of the 64 case studies resulted in a detectable reduction inpopulation density or damage.
    • The most common type of operation used unpaid or commercial harvest-oriented shooters to reduce herbivore density or damage.
    • Only 30% of operations that used volunteer shooters or recreational hunters achieved their objectives.
    • Target taxa, geographic area, or integration of shooting with other population-control methods had no significant effect on the effectiveness of shooting operations.
    • Common factors hindering effectiveness included immigration of target species from adjacent areas, decreasing effort from shooters as the target population declined, and selective harvesting.
  • Conclusions:

    • Ground-based shooting can be effective but is not guaranteed to reduce animal abundance or damage.
    • Failures were often due to an inability to remove a sufficient proportion of the population to cause a decline.
    • Managers contemplating ground-based shooting should carefully consider its suitability for their goals, establish clear objectives, and ensure sufficient resources.
  • Implications:

    • Managers should:

      • Evaluate whether ground-based shooting aligns with their objectives.
      • Define clear objectives and allow for continuous improvement.
      • Ensure adequate resources for achieving and maintaining objectives.

This report provides valuable insights for wildlife managers considering ground-based shooting as a wildlife population management strategy.

B.C. SPCA 'not opposed' to mass deer kill on Sidney Island

### Key Takeaway The B.C. SPCA supports a planned mass deer kill on Sidney Island, aiming to end the ineffective seasonal hunting cycle that has persisted for decades.

### Summary

  • Background:

    • B.C. SPCA expresses support for a mass deer kill on Sidney Island.
    • The organization aims to break the ineffective cycle of seasonal hunting that has been ongoing for many decades.
  • Involvement and Consultation:

    • B.C. SPCA has been consulted by Parks Canada since 2017 during the planning stages of the deer eradication plan.
    • The animal welfare agency is actively engaged and will have personnel on the ground when the deer hunt commences on Dec. 1.
  • Reasoning:

    • The key rationale behind supporting the mass deer kill is to halt the historical pattern of ineffective and seasonal hunting.
    • B.C. SPCA sees this approach as a more decisive and humane solution compared to the past decades' hunting practices.
  • Collaboration with Parks Canada:

    • The collaboration between B.C. SPCA and Parks Canada highlights a cooperative effort to address wildlife management issues.
    • This collaboration spans several years, indicating a thorough and considered planning process.
  • Preventing Ineffective Killing Cycle:

    • The main goal of the mass deer kill is to put an end to what B.C. SPCA perceives as an "ineffective killing cycle" associated with seasonal hunting.
    • By supporting this approach, the organization seeks a more sustainable and impactful solution to manage the deer population.
  • Timing and Execution:

    • The deer eradication plan is scheduled to begin on December 1.
    • B.C. SPCA's active involvement during the hunt underscores its commitment to ensuring the process aligns with ethical and humane standards.
  • Overall Implication:

    • The stance of B.C. SPCA indicates a shift towards more strategic and comprehensive wildlife management practices, moving away from traditional seasonal hunting approaches.
    • The collaboration with Parks Canada suggests a multi-stakeholder effort to address ecological challenges while considering animal welfare.

Black-Tailed Deer In The City: A Scientific Approach To Population Control Using Immunocontraception

Concerns remain over methods used in Sidney Island deer eradication

### Key Takeaway The first phase of the Sidney Island deer eradication project has concluded, but lingering concerns persist among experts regarding the methods employed.

### Summary

  • Sidney Island Deer Eradication Project:

    • First phase completed.
    • Ongoing concerns among experts.
  • Concerns Raised:

    • Methods used in deer eradication.
    • Specific concerns not detailed in the provided information.
  • Expert Opinions:

    • Some experts express reservations.
    • Nature of concerns not explicitly mentioned.
  • Project Status:

    • Completion of initial phase.
    • No information on subsequent phases or future plans.
  • Overall Impression:

    • Unclear whether concerns impact the continuation of the project.
    • Lack of specifics regarding the nature of concerns.
  • Need for Transparency:

    • Call for detailed information on methods used.
    • Transparency may address lingering concerns.
  • Future Developments:

    • No information on potential adjustments to methods.
    • Lack of clarity on community and stakeholder involvement.
  • Public Perception:

    • No mention of public sentiment.
    • The article focuses on expert concerns.
  • Conclusion:

    • The completion of the first phase does not alleviate concerns raised by some experts.
    • Lack of details hinders a comprehensive understanding of the situation.

Confessions of a Sharpshooter: How a Deer Cull Actually Works

### Key Takeaway The key takeaway from the web page is that a deer cull, which involves controlled hunting to manage deer populations, can be a contentious issue, even leading to unlikely alliances between animal rights groups and hunters. The article also highlights the complexities and challenges involved in implementing a successful deer cull.

### Summary

  • An animal rights group and a hunters' rights group join forces on Long Island's East End to protest a plan to cull up to 3,000 deer from the local population, leading to a polarized community and unexpected partnerships.
  • This is the first landscape-level cull in the region, sparking opposition due to concerns about wildlife management methods.
  • Local hunters are unhappy with hired guns being used for the cull and question why taxpayers are funding a service hunters could provide for free.
  • Animal rights groups are equally opposed, launching protests, petitions, and contacting officials to stop the cull. They raise concerns about removing a significant number of keystone species from the ecosystem.
  • The author, a wildlife specialist with USDA Wildlife Services, shares insights from participating in three deer culls over five years.
  • The author describes a specific culling operation where night hunting takes place, with techniques like drop-and-go methods from vehicles and stationary positions near bait.
  • Various challenges arise, including the difficulty of baiting older, wiser deer, the limited effectiveness of suppressed firearms, and concerns about animal welfare and clean kills.
  • The article explains that culls are more common where hunting isn't a viable management tool, such as areas with discharge laws, lawsuits, or changing hunting cultures.
  • The collaboration between government wildlife control agencies, hunters, and animal rights groups is motivated by a shared goal of maintaining a healthy and sustainable deer population.
  • The article concludes by suggesting that as urbanization continues, deer culls may become more common as a means of wildlife management.

(Note: This summary report is based on the provided web page content and does not include any additional information beyond the given text.)

Conflict of interest concern raised for Sidney Island deer-cull contract

### Key Takeaway Jordan Reichert of the Animal Alliance of Canada is concerned about a Parks Canada contract for eradicating invasive fallow deer on Sidney Island due to potential conflicts of interest and perceived misallocation of funds.

### Summary

  • Jordan Reichert, West Coast director of the Animal Alliance of Canada, has raised concerns about a $5.9-million Parks Canada contract for eradicating invasive fallow deer on Sidney Island.
  • The project involves marksmen in a helicopter and on the ground killing European fallow deer over a 10-day period, followed by additional measures to contain and remove any survivors.
  • The contract was awarded to Coastal Conservation, a company specializing in removing invasive species from islands to promote ecosystem recovery, which also played a significant role in planning the project.
  • Reichert questions the procurement process, stating that using millions of tax dollars for this project is "unnecessary" and that the funds could be better allocated elsewhere.
  • A complaint was lodged by Reichert with the Office of the Procurement Ombudsman, but it could not be pursued due to the contract's value exceeding its jurisdiction.
  • Documents obtained through freedom of information requests show that concerns were raised by Parks Canada staff about potential conflicts of interest involving Gregg Howald of Coastal Conservation.
  • Coastal Conservation was previously awarded a contract of $724,500 to develop an eradication operation plan before being awarded the current contract for execution.
  • Parks Canada asserts that the fallow deer population's impact on the ecosystem is still negative and justifies the eradication project.
  • The population estimates vary, with Parks Canada estimating 300 to 900 deer, while some residents claim the population is closer to 300 due to previous culling efforts.
  • Reichert questions the justification for a $5.9-million eradication project without accurate population data.
  • Parks Canada controls a portion of the island's land, and residents, who own the majority of the land, were given a vote on the culling decision.
  • Coastal Conservation had been involved in a similar deer-eradication project on Haida Gwaii in 2017, which was eventually canceled.
  • Public feedback on the deer cull is being accepted by Parks Canada until August 23.

Please note that this summary report is based solely on the provided web page content and may not include any additional context or developments beyond the provided text.

Deer Friendly

A site dedicated to providing news and issues relating to deer slaughter. It also provides extensive information on humane methods of deer control. Unfortunately, some of the links don't work, but the site is still a good resource that is well-organized and thorough.

Demonstrators protest Sidney Island deer eradication

### Key Takeaway The key takeaway from the web page is that approximately 50 people gathered in Beacon Park to peacefully protest the planned deer eradication on Sidney Island by Parks Canada. The protesters are questioning the justification and methods of the $5.9-million project, urging government officials to consider alternative approaches and seek more scientific data before proceeding.

### Summary

  • Protest Gathering:

    • Around 50 people gathered in Beacon Park to protest the planned deer eradication on Sidney Island.
  • Organizer's Perspective:

    • Protest organizer Sharon Glynn expressed opposition to the mass kill, arguing that the fallow deer population is already under control due to safe hunting parties on the island.
  • Park Canada's Project Purpose:

    • Park Canada aims to eliminate invasive fallow deer to allow native black-tailed deer to recover and restore the native understory growth.
  • Deer Eradication Details:

    • The $5.9-million project involves sharpshooters in helicopters and hunters on land with tracking dogs, scheduled between Nov. 25 and Dec. 15.
  • Government Spending Concerns:

    • Protesters question the government's allocation of funds for the project, especially since the majority of the island is private.
  • Hereditary Chief Support:

    • Tsawout First Nation hereditary chief Eric Pelkey supports the project, emphasizing the restoration of the forest to its original state.
  • Appeal to Saanich-Gulf Islands MP:

    • Protesters are urging Saanich-Gulf Islands MP Elizabeth May to raise the issue in Parliament, requesting a postponement for more scientific data and consideration of alternative solutions.
  • BC SPCA Involvement:

    • BC SPCA was consulted in choosing sharpshooters to ensure humane dispatching of deer, emphasizing the expertise and training of the individuals involved.
  • Public Reaction:

    • The article notes a previous incident of a deer with an arrow stuck in it in Saanich, drawing attention to public concerns about deer welfare.
  • Government Support and Historical Context:

    • The government project has received support from some members, including the Tsawout First Nation hereditary chief. Historical context is provided, referencing the utilization of the forest by ancestors.
  • Media Coverage:

    • The report acknowledges contributions from Ella Matte and highlights the Peninsula News Review as the source of information.
  • Request for Parliamentary Action:

    • The protesters are hoping for parliamentary attention and action, asking for a postponement and a thorough examination of scientific data.
  • Additional News Highlights:

    • The web page includes links to other news highlights and features a community poll unrelated to the deer eradication issue.

This comprehensive summary covers the main points of the protest, reasons for opposition, government perspective, and the wider context of the issue.

Effectiveness and costs of helicopter-based shooting of deer

### Key Takeaway Helicopter-based shooting is an effective method for reducing deer populations over large areas, but the extent of reduction depends on the effort put into the operation.

### Summary

  • The study evaluates the effectiveness and costs of helicopter-based shooting for controlling fallow deer and chital deer populations in eastern Australia.
  • The research aims to measure reductions in deer density, the relationship between deer killed per hour and density, costs of control, and the relationships between effort, outcome, and cost.
  • The study analyzes 12 aerial shooting operations targeting fallow deer and chital deer at nine sites characterized by fragmented woodland.
  • Population reductions achieved varied between 5% and 75% for fallow deer and 48% and 88% for chital deer.
  • The most significant population reductions occurred with higher effort per unit area, especially when shooting was conducted in consecutive years.
  • The functional response of hourly kills to deer density follows a modified Ivlev model, with an estimated asymptotic kill rate of 50 deer per hour.
  • There's no evidence of a prey refuge, indicating no density threshold below which no deer could be shot.
  • Helicopter charter costs were the main expense, followed by labor, while firearm and ammunition costs were relatively minor.
  • The study recommends pre-control population surveys to establish measurable objectives, estimate required effort and costs, and evaluate realized population reduction.

### Keywords abundance, aerial gunning, aerial shooting, aerial survey, Bayesian statistics, chital deer, culling, density, effort–outcome, fallow deer, functional response, mark–recapture distance sampling.

(Note: The above report is based on the provided web page content and does not include any external information beyond what is present in the content.)

EPA gives thumbs up on vaccine to manage deer populations humanely

### Key Takeaway The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved the registration of an immunocontraceptive vaccine called Zonastat-D for managing deer populations humanely. This vaccine aims to reduce deer populations gradually without resorting to lethal methods, offering an alternative approach to conflicts with wildlife in urban and suburban communities.

### Summary

  • The EPA has given approval for the registration of the immunocontraceptive vaccine, Zonastat-D, which is designed for managing deer populations humanely.
  • Previously, communities often resorted to shooting or killing deer to address conflicts with wildlife in neighborhoods.
  • Zonastat-D is adapted from the Zonastat-H vaccine used for wild horse population control, and it is based on the porcine zona pellucida (PZP) vaccine. PZP blocks fertilization by triggering the production of antibodies that bind to the protein envelope surrounding the egg.
  • The approval of Zonastat-D offers an alternative approach to population control, enabling wildlife managers to reduce deer populations gradually and avoid lethal methods like sport hunting or sharpshooting, which are often considered unsafe and impractical in urban and suburban areas.
  • The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has been involved in studies and research that provided the foundation for the registration of this vaccine. They have administered PZP-filled darts to deer in various locations, and evidence suggests that when used properly, PZP reduces fawning rates by 85 to 90 percent.
  • The EPA's approval of Zonastat-D confirms the safety and effectiveness of this vaccine for managing deer populations. The HSUS plans to work with state wildlife agencies and communities to implement non-lethal programs and build comprehensive, humane solutions for coexisting with wildlife.
  • The approach of using PZP vaccines offers a more humane alternative to mass killing and aims to better manage localized overabundance of certain species in urban and suburban environments.
  • The vaccine approval highlights the need for more options in 21st-century wildlife management and encourages a more compassionate approach to dealing with conflicts between humans and wildlife.

Eradication And Restoration Options On Sidney Island

5 page doc by Jack Albrecht Ruth Albrecht Fred Anderka Frank Nielsen Robin Bassett


### Key Takeaway The key takeaway from the web page content is that the issue at hand revolves around the restoration and eradication options for fallow deer on Sidney Island, with differing perspectives on the necessity of eradication, the ecological impacts, ethical considerations, and the need for well-informed decision-making.

### Summary

  • The document discusses the ongoing debate regarding the restoration and eradication of fallow deer on Sidney Island.
  • The process involves a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) approved by Sidney Island, and there are documents available on the Sidney Island website under the Parks Canada Proposal.
  • The issue has caused disagreement among owners and involves concerns about access to hunting, with the potential eradication of fallow deer ending hunting on the island.
  • The history of discussions and attempts to communicate with the Council regarding eradication is outlined, including various documents shared with the owners.
  • Some owners took it upon themselves to communicate with Parks Canada, leading to the drafting of the MOU, which states that "eradication is critical for restoration."
  • Relevant documents include a UBC research paper discussing the recovery of woody plants on the island and a paper on ethical wildlife control principles by Dr. Sara Dubois.
  • Questions raised include the necessity of eradication for restoration, the definition of restoration, the ethical implications of eradicating invasive species, and the impact on black tail deer.
  • The document highlights the lack of clarity on what "restoration" truly entails and whether eradicating the fallow deer is essential for achieving it.
  • The presence of invasive species and the potential ecological improvements observed are discussed in relation to the fallow deer population.
  • Concerns are raised about the cost of Parks Canada's proposal, the methods of eradication, and the impact on the community.
  • The MOU was authorized by 80% of owners, with a final vote requiring a 75% majority for approval.
  • The Eradication and Restoration Committees have met multiple times, but there are concerns about a lack of alternative narratives to eradication and potential groupthink.
  • The involvement of Parks Canada personnel in eradication efforts and their associated costs are mentioned.
  • Recent correspondence suggests the consideration of a "population ecologist" to assess population numbers and the viability of management control instead of eradication.
  • The concept of "restoration" is explored further, with emphasis on the need for well-informed decision-making and compromise.
  • The document concludes by stating that the issue extends beyond a hunters versus non-hunters debate, touching on ethical and moral obligations toward the fallow deer population.

(Note: The summary includes the main points covered in the web page content. For a comprehensive report, the text has been condensed into bullet points while maintaining the core ideas and information.)


The text is a summary of the issue of fallow deer eradication and restoration on Sidney Island, written by some owners who are not opposed to restoration but have questions and concerns about the process and the impact of eradication. The text provides some background information on the communication between the owners and the Council, and the documents that were shared on the website. The text also mentions a survey question on hunting and a new disease affecting black tail deer.

Perplexity: [incorrect conclusion]

The document titled "Eradiation and Restoration Options on Sidney Island" discusses the issue of overpopulation of fallow deer on Sidney Island and the proposed plan to eradicate the deer population. The document outlines the reasons for the proposed eradication plan, including the negative impact of deer on the island's ecosystem and the risk of deer-vehicle collisions. The document also discusses the potential alternatives to eradication, such as relocation and contraception, and the challenges associated with these options. Ultimately, the document concludes that eradication is the most effective and efficient option for managing the deer population on Sidney Island.

Citations: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]


The document discusses the topic of eradication and restoration options for fallow deer on Sidney Island. It begins with a background explanation, highlighting the efforts of a Steering Committee and Working Groups to develop a plan for fallow deer eradication and restoration, based on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) approved in March 2020. The document emphasizes the importance of addressing new owners and responding to Council's recent material.

The authors clarify that they are not opposed to restoring the island's ecology, but their concerns were about the process used for open dialogue on deer eradication. They mention efforts made to communicate with the Council and their involvement in discussions with Parks Canada to reset the process. They refer to various documents on the Sidney Island website that provide historical context and viewpoints supporting eradication.

Two key documents are highlighted:

  1. A UBC research paper from May 2019, which presents empirical evidence regarding flora restoration on Sidney Island, indicating a general 30% improvement over six years. This paper neither states eradication is "critical" nor examines alternatives to eradication.
  2. A paper by Dr. Sara Dubois on ethical wildlife control principles, suggesting that the term "invasive" should not solely justify extermination and emphasizing minimal harm in wildlife control.

The document raises several fundamental questions:

  1. The necessity of eradicating fallow deer for restoration and defining the concept of "restoration." It questions the specific goals of long-term forest recovery and what this entails.
  2. The ethical considerations of labeling species as "invasive" and whether eradication meets ethical and ecological standards.
  3. The adequacy of lowering the fallow deer population to under 200, given observed ecological improvements, and why a management control plan isn't considered.
  4. The potential costs, safety concerns, and ethical implications of eradication methods, including helicopter hunting and hunting with dogs.

The document recounts the authorization of the MOU in March 2020 and notes the ongoing work of the Eradication and Restoration Committees. Concerns are raised about a lack of diverse perspectives in these committees and the secrecy of their proceedings.

Recent correspondence from Parks Canada suggests exploring management control rather than eradication, utilizing a "population ecologist" to assess population numbers and hunting history. This is seen as a positive step by the authors.

The document concludes by stating that the issue goes beyond hunters versus non-hunters and emphasizes the moral and ethical obligations towards fallow deer. It calls for an informed decision-making process and finding a compromise to this emotionally charged issue.

The document is signed by multiple authors: Jack Albrecht, Ruth Albrecht, Fred Anderka, Frank Nielsen, and Robin Bassett.

Fallow deer eating their way across Gulf Islands

### Key Takeaway Invasive fallow deer with voracious appetites are spreading across Gulf Islands, devouring native trees and plants, posing a threat to ecosystems, vineyards, and gardens. Parks Canada and local residents are seeking a final solution to control the deer population.

### Summary

  • Invasive European fallow deer, distinct from native black-tailed deer, have become a problem on Gulf Islands due to their indiscriminate eating habits and rapid population growth.
  • The deer were originally introduced to James Island for sport hunting and have since spread to Sidney Island and other areas.
  • Efforts have been made to control the population through annual culls using methods like corral systems, bolt guns, and mobile meat processors.
  • Despite culling efforts, the fallow deer population has continued to grow on Mayne Island, with some deer island-hopping to other locations like Saturna Island.
  • The deer's impact includes stripping vegetation, outcompeting native species, and threatening the rare Garry oak ecosystem, vineyards, and gardens.
  • Cameras are being set up to monitor deer numbers on Saturna Island, and community input will be sought for the next steps.
  • The preferred solution is to remove all the animals, but this approach is controversial and requires expert consultation.
  • The lack of natural predators has contributed to the deer population's unchecked growth.
  • The deer are also affecting the native black-tailed deer population on Mayne Island due to a lack of predators.
  • The deer's impact is particularly significant on plants such as arbutus, Garry oaks, and conifers.
  • Concerns about the deer's movement into developed areas where hunting is restricted are growing.
  • There is debate on Mayne Island regarding a complete cull, as some residents oppose this solution.
  • Efforts to determine the density of the deer population and secure funding for management strategies are ongoing.
  • The situation highlights the need for a comprehensive approach to address the ecological and economic challenges posed by invasive fallow deer.

This report summarizes the issue of invasive fallow deer on Gulf Islands, their impact on ecosystems and communities, and the ongoing efforts to find a solution to manage their population.

Fast action needed to stop mass kill of deer on B.C. Island

### Key Takeaway The planned mass killing of all deer on Sidney Island, British Columbia, particularly targeting fallow deer, has sparked significant outrage among residents and visitors.

### Summary

  • Location and Ownership:

    • Sidney Island, situated north of Victoria, is comprised of approximately 20% national park land, with the remaining area being privately owned and inhabited by full- and part-time residents.
  • Personal Connection:

    • The author expresses personal fondness for the island, having enjoyed camping there multiple times, highlighting its peaceful and beautiful qualities, especially given its proximity to the city.
  • Controversial Action by Parks Canada:

    • Parks Canada has announced its intention to carry out a mass kill of fallow deer on Sidney Island, citing them as a non-native species.
  • Public Outrage:

    • The planned mass kill has generated widespread outrage among both residents and others, emphasizing the emotional response to this conservation strategy.
  • Environmental Context:

    • The island is described as a small but valuable oasis close to the city, emphasizing its ecological and recreational significance.
  • Conservation Rationale:

    • The primary motivation behind the mass deer kill is framed as a conservation effort, with a focus on eliminating the non-native fallow deer species.
  • Call for Action:

    • The overall tone of the article suggests an urgent need for intervention to prevent the planned mass killing, urging for reconsideration of the conservation strategy.
  • Unresolved Questions:

    • The article does not provide detailed information on alternative conservation measures or address potential ecological consequences of the mass deer removal. [However, there are plenty of viable alternatives as outlined in the Resources section.]
  • Author Perspective:

    • The author positions themselves as part of a larger community that opposes the planned action, adding a personal and community-oriented dimension to the narrative.
  • Absence of Detailed Information:

    • The article lacks specific details on the methods Parks Canada plans to use for the massdeer kill or the timeline for implementation.
  • Overall Impact:

    • The controversy surrounding the mass deer kill on Sidney Island reflects broader debates about conservation strategies, raising questions about the balance between protecting native ecosystems and ethical considerations in wildlife management.

Humane dispatch

### Key Takeaway The web page provides comprehensive guidance on humane dispatch procedures for injured deer, covering legal aspects, safety considerations, methods of dispatch, and operator competency.

### Summary

  • The web page focuses on providing guidance for the humane dispatch of injured deer, emphasizing legal, safety, and ethical considerations.
  • Legal Aspects:

    • Section 25 of the Deer (Scotland) Act 1996 exempts individuals from guilt if they take or kill deer to prevent suffering, including injured, diseased, or starving deer.
    • Firearms or ammunition that are otherwise prohibited can be used for humane dispatch under certain circumstances.
  • Safety and Welfare:

    • Situation assessment is crucial, considering factors such as operator safety, public safety, deer welfare, and operator competency.
    • Risks associated with using firearms and potential danger from injured deer's antlers or hooves should be considered.
    • The dispatcher's aim should be to ensure rapid loss of consciousness and death without causing unnecessary suffering.
  • Methods of Dispatch:

    • Shooting with firearms is the preferred method, following proper authorization and safety measures.
    • Other methods include the use of drugs (administered by qualified individuals), captive bolt (by trained slaughter personnel), and the use of a knife (only by experienced operators).
  • Dispatching Scenarios:

    • Dispatching is required for wounded, diseased, injured, or trapped deer.
    • Trapped but uninjured deer should be assessed for appropriate action.
  • Operator Competency:

    • Dispatch should only be attempted by individuals with necessary skills, training, and experience.
  • Carcass Disposal:

    • The person responsible for carcass disposal should be identified and aware of the proper procedures.
  • Insurance and Liability:

    • Individuals involved in deer management are advised to have adequate public liability coverage.
  • Specialized Practitioners:

    • Those specializing in the humane dispatch of Deer Vehicle Collision (DVC) injured deer should have relevant experience, training, and competence.

Note: The summary covers various aspects of humane dispatch procedures, including legal provisions, safety precautions, dispatch methods, operator competence, and carcass disposal.

For more details, please refer to the original web page.

Is Sterilization the Answer to Too Many Urban Deer?

### Key Takeaway Sterilization of urban deer populations, although controversial, has shown potential in reducing deer numbers in certain areas. While the method is met with skepticism, studies indicate a decline in deer populations through sterilization efforts.

### Summary

  • Sterilization is being considered as a method to address urban deer overpopulation in various US cities and suburbs.
  • Tony DeNicola, a wildlife biologist, has initiated deer sterilization programs in different locations to control deer numbers.
  • DeNicola's sterilization program in Cincinnati, started in 2015, has resulted in a 19 percent decline in the deer population over three years.
  • Similar successful sterilization results have been observed in other areas, including Cayuga, New York (34 percent decline), Fairfax, Virginia (20 percent decline), Bethesda, Maryland (47 percent decline), and San Jose, California (37 percent decline).
  • Opposition to sterilization comes from hunters who have traditionally been involved in deer population control. However, studies suggest that hunting may not effectively reduce deer numbers for ecological impact.
  • A case study in a gated community in San Jose, where sterilization was employed due to landscaping losses caused by deer, resulted in a reduction of the deer population from 153 to 60.
  • Despite skepticism, a sterilization project on Staten Island saw an 8 percent decrease in the deer population.
  • A grassroots deer sterilization project in Cincinnati's Clifton neighborhood, initiated by residents, successfully raised funds and implemented sterilization efforts.
  • The Cincinnati project involves sterilizing does, and it has a goal of achieving 95 percent sterilization to maintain a sustainable approach to wildlife management.
  • The sterilization procedure involves surgical removal of ovaries, tagging the deer, and releasing them after a reversal drug is administered.
  • Sterilization efforts have potential for reducing urban deer populations, but the method remains controversial within the wildlife management community.

For the full analysis and context, please refer to the provided web page content.

Letter by Film Maker Wendy Ord (pdf)

Wendy is a award winning writer, director and producer with credits for "Christmas Carol" (2023), "Perfect Manicure", "The Way To The Heart" and more! You can find her IMDb Bio here. Summary of her letter follows:

### Key Takeaway The key takeaway from the web page is that the author strongly opposes the plan to eradicate deer on Sidney Island proposed by Parks Canada. The opposition is based on various grounds, including concerns about the accuracy of deer population estimates, lack of social license, credibility issues with project execution, potential negative ecological impacts, disruption of island residents' lives, and potential financial misallocation.

### Summary

  • The author opposes the eradication of deer on Sidney Island proposed by Parks Canada, both European Fallow Deer and native Black-tailed Deer.
  • Parks Canada lacks a clear definition of "social license," and the author believes they do not have it due to legitimacy, credibility, and trust issues.
  • There's a conflict of interest since Coastal Conservation, a company involved in pushing the project, is leading the contractors, potentially benefiting financially.
  • The eradication plan doesn't have 50% of island owners' permission; only 45% of strata lots voted in favor.
  • The author questions the credibility of information provided by Parks Canada, including the lack of mention that all deer on the island will be eradicated.
  • A UBC study from 2013 to 2018 shows the island's ecology improved, but PC presents a negative image of the island's state.
  • The author questions the urgency of eradication, as restoration is observed through a hunt and cull program.
  • The success of the eradication is uncertain, and non-compliance with fencing and potential negative impacts on the ecosystem are concerns.
  • Trust in Parks Canada has eroded due to misinformation and mishandling of the project.
  • The author, along with many others, opposes the eradication due to concerns about cruelty, ecological impacts, disruption of residents' lives, and loss of local food sources.
  • The project's timeline is outlined, involving aerial and ground operations over several months, leading to significant disruptions for residents and the environment.
  • The author believes the loss of deer will upset the balance of nature, increase invasive species, and pose forest fire threats.
  • Repopulation of Black-tailed Deer is mentioned as a potential concern, while repopulation of fallow deer is questioned.
  • The author calls for reconsideration of the project, asserting that it lacks social license and questions the allocation of taxpayer dollars.

(Note: The summary aims to capture the main points from the web page content and might not include every single detail.)

Looming deer slaughter called 'disturbing, terrifying' by Sidney Island residents

### Key Takeaway The residents of Sidney Island are divided over Parks Canada's plan to kill all European fallow deer, with concerns about the use of helicopters, potential harm to other wildlife, and the emotional impact on the community.

### Summary

  • Parks Canada plans to eradicate European fallow deer on Sidney Island, including native blacktails, to restore ecological balance.
  • Residents are divided; some, like Wendy Ord, argue the mass slaughter isn't necessary due to already low deer numbers.
  • Concerns include the inability to distinguish between deer species by sharpshooters, the use of helicopters, loudspeakers, and drop nets for capture, causing distress to residents, pets, and wildlife.
  • Rob Milne raises concerns about the impact on bald eagles and raptors due to low-flying helicopters.
  • Proponents argue the deer eradication is essential for the ecological balance, citing disappearing understory plantswith medicinal value for the W̱SÁNEĆ people.
  • Parks Canada has awarded a $5.9-million project to Coastal Conservation, covering deer eradication, public consultation, support for indigenous community hunting, invasive plant removal, and replanting native species until 2026.
  • Shooting is estimated between Nov. 25 and Dec. 14, with a second phase in the following winter.
  • Saanich-Gulf Islands MP Elizabeth May, still recovering from a stroke, is examining the plan; key permits for helicopter use are pending.
  • Critics argue Parks Canada lacks accurate deer counts, with estimates ranging from 300 to 900; no formal counts by scientists have been conducted.
  • A 2019 UBC study suggests increased vegetation on the island due to sustained managed hunting since 2019.
  • Over 18,000 people signed a petition to cancel the deer killing.
  • Janice McLeod supports eradication, fearing the island will resemble Mandarte Island without intervention.
  • The community is emotionally divided, with concerns about the impact on the island's character, wildlife, and the prolonged nature of the hunt.
  • Residents express horror at the prospect of on-the-ground fenced hunting seven days a week for four or five months.
  • Despite differing opinions, there is a call for reasonable discussions and exploring alternative solutions to the deer issue.

Non-Lethal Deer Population Control for Urban and Suburban Environments

### Key Takeaway The web page discusses non-lethal methods for controlling deer populations in urban and suburban environments, primarily focusing on contraception and sterilization. It highlights the challenges and benefits of these approaches, as well as their potential impact on managing deer populations.

### Summary The web page emphasizes the use of non-lethal methods for managing deer populations in urban and suburban areas. The key points include:

  • Deer Population Control Methods:

    • The article advocates for non-lethal strategies such as contraception and sterilization to manage deer populations.
    • It highlights the limitations and ethical concerns associated with lethal methods like culling.
  • Deer Contraception:

    • Various forms of contraception are discussed, such as Gonacon and Spayvac.
    • Contraception can be effective, with success rates often reported in the 90 to 95 percent range.
    • Costs vary depending on factors like labor and the number of deer.
    • Contraception needs to be reapplied after a few years.
  • Sterilization:

    • Sterilization methods, including spaying, ovariectomy, and tubal ligation, are explored.
    • Sterilization can be more expensive but offers long-term effectiveness (97-100 percent) and needs to be done only once.
    • Challenges include surgical interventions, equipment, and potential attraction of bucks to sterilized does.
  • Examples of Sterilization Programs:

    • The web page provides examples of cities and regions that have implemented sterilization programs.
    • Oak Bay in British Columbia successfully reduced fawn numbers through immunocontraception, leading to a decrease in the deer population.
    • South Euclid, Ohio, initiated a sterilization program, aiming for long-term impact on deer numbers.
  • Challenges and Considerations:

    • The article acknowledges challenges in implementing non-lethal methods, such as cost, labor, and legal regulations.
    • Different communities have debated and implemented various strategies based on local contexts and preferences.
    • Public attitudes, government regulations, and local decision-making influence the choice of methods.
  • Benefits and Implications:

    • Non-lethal methods help avoid negative consequences associated with culling, such as public opposition and the need for ongoing killing programs.
    • Successes in reducing deer populations through sterilization and contraception programs are highlighted, providing evidence for the feasibility of these approaches.
  • Debate and Research:

    • The web page also touches on the ongoing debate about optimal deer density and the relationship between deer populations and issues like Lyme disease.
    • The role of fertility control programs in reducing deer populations without resorting to lethal methods is emphasized.

The overall message of the web page is that non-lethal methods like contraception and sterilization offer promising alternatives for managing deer populations in urban and suburban settings, with evidence of successful programs and ongoing research in this area.

Not tonight deer: A new birth control vaccine helps reduce urban deer damage

### Key Takeaway A new birth control vaccine named GonaCon™ has been developed to control white-tailed deer populations in urban areas. This vaccine reduces dangerous reproductive behavior, preventing collisions with automobiles and damage to gardens. It also has applications in managing undesirable behaviors in other animals.

### Summary

  • A birth control vaccine called GonaCon™ has been developed to address the issue of white-tailed deer overpopulation in urban areas.
  • The vaccine eliminates the reproductive behavior responsible for the surge in automobile-deer collisions during autumn.
  • The vaccine was discussed at the 242nd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS).
  • GonaCon™ has the potential to reduce or eliminate undesirable behaviors in household pets and farm animals such as scent-marking, fighting, caterwauling, and wandering in cats, as well as aggressive behavior in horses.
  • The vaccine blocks the action of male and female sex hormones (testosterone and estrogen), responsible for these behaviors.
  • It could also be used for prairie dogs, wild horses, and feral dogs.
  • The vaccine addresses the population explosion of white-tailed deer, which cause damage to gardens, landscaping plants, and attract predators into residential areas.
  • Deer-auto collisions result in deaths and significant property damage.
  • GonaCon™ is developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service/Wildlife Services National Wildlife Research Center.
  • Unlike other birth-control vaccines, GonaCon™ prevents mating behaviors in vaccinated deer, eliminating dangerous situations.
  • The vaccine blocks a biological signal triggered by decreasing day length in autumn, inducing infertility by targeting gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH).
  • The vaccine was effective in various animals including white-tailed deer, ground squirrels, rats, swine, and wild horses.
  • A single injection of GnRH led to infertility lasting up to five years in penned white-tailed deer.
  • The vaccine needed to be registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and requires concentration data of the active ingredient.
  • GonaCon™ is the only EPA-registered multi-year, single-injection wildlife contraceptive for female white-tailed deer.
  • It must be administered by USDA or state game and fish department staff members and has been approved for use in Maryland and New Jersey.
  • The vaccine ensures that female deer remain sterile for years, reducing the risk of accidents caused by deer in traffic.

Note: The report has been generated based on the provided web page content, and some information might be missing or inaccurately interpreted due to the limitations of the content provided.

Parks Canada seeks input 230801

### Key Takeaway The key takeaway from the web page is that a cull of fallow deer on Sidney Island is being conducted due to the negative impact these deer have had on the ecosystem, even though it contradicts the teachings of the island's elders. The cull aims to address the decimation caused by the deer population.

### Summary

  • Sidney Island is undergoing a cull of fallow deer to combat their negative impact on the ecosystem.
  • The cull has been met with resistance due to the conflict with traditional teachings and practices of the island's elders.
  • The overpopulation of fallow deer has led to a significant reduction in the island's forest understory.
  • Black-tailed deer, once hunted by the community, are now virtually extinct on the island.
  • The cull involves shooting animals from a helicopter, which has raised ethical concerns about suffering.
  • Critics, such as the Animal Alliance of Canada, question the lack of data on the deer population and suggest exploring non-lethal methods like immuno-contraception.
  • The proliferation of fallow deer has adversely affected the ecosystem's biodiversity and plant growth.
  • Traditional foods, medicines, and habitats for animals are impacted by the loss of lush plants in the understory.
  • Sidney Island hosts the coastal Douglas fir ecosystem, which is unique to the region.
  • Public feedback on the cull can be provided until August 23 via specific online links.

(Note: The provided text does not include links, so the URLs are not complete in the summary.)

On the eve of mass fallow deer kill, pleas to stop the helicopter cull


### Key Takeaway The mass kill of fallow deer on Sidney Island, scheduled to start on Friday, is proceeding despite appeals claiming it is unnecessary. The $6-million plan aims to restore the island's ecosystem, but there are opposing views on the necessity and methods involved.

### Summary

  • Deer Eradication Operation:

    • A mass kill of fallow deer on Sidney Island is set to begin despite last-minute appeals.
    • The operation, costing $6 million, is aimed at restoring the island's fragile Coastal Douglas Fir ecosystems.
  • Opposition and Appeals:

    • Private property owners and some citizens have appealed to the prime minister, federal environment minister, and the B.C. SPCA to halt the deer cull.
    • First Nations confirm the operation is underway, emphasizing the damage caused by fallow deer to the land and ecosystem.
  • Execution Plan:

    • A company will shoot deer from a helicopter, assisted by ground hunters with dogs.
    • First Nations members will set up camps, locate carcasses marked by GPS, and handle the skinning and butchering.
  • Differing Perspectives:

    • Some island residents argue against the eradication plan, stating the deer numbers are not critical and suggesting alternative uses for the allocated funds.
    • A local hunter and wildlife biology professor assert that organized hunts and culls in the past have reduced the deer population effectively.
  • Animal Welfare Concerns:

    • The B.C. SPCA's endorsement of the mass kill has sparked outrage among some citizens, with concerns about inhumane practices and a lack of widespread public support.
    • An online petition against the deer kill has garnered over 20,000 signatures.
  • Utilization of Deer Resources:

    • Despite opposition, First Nations plan to use fallow deer resources for cultural purposes, such as making drums and moccasins.
    • Blacktail deer are set to be reintroduced to the island after the fallow deer eradication.
  • Environmental Impact Claims:

    • Arguments exist that the island's ecology has already improved due to previous hunting efforts, and a more elaborate plan may not be necessary.
  • Potential Alternatives:

    • Some island residents propose reallocating funds to address pressing needs in First Nations communities rather than focusing on deer eradication.
  • Long-term Effects and Future Phases:

    • A second phase of killings is planned a year later, involving fencing and dogs to round up any remaining deer.
    • Concerns are raised about the broader impact on the ecosystem and public perception, with potential consequences for the B.C. SPCA.
  • Cultural Utilization of Deer:

    • The planned use of fallow deer resources by First Nations for cultural purposes adds a dimension to the debate beyond ecological concerns.

This summary captures the multifaceted nature of the deer cull issue, involving ecological, cultural, ethical, and financial considerations, with differing opinions among stakeholders.

Plan to eradicate fallow deer population from B.C. island faces backlash (Terrace Standard 230809)

Animal Alliance of Canada speaks out about alternative methods to preserve Sidney Island ecosystem

### Key Takeaway Animal advocates, led by the Animal Alliance of Canada, are opposing the plan to exterminate an invasive fallow deer population on Sidney Island, British Columbia. The plan aims to restore native plant habitats, but critics argue that more humane alternatives should be considered.

### Summary

  • Parks Canada's plan involves culling the fallow deer population on Sidney Island to help restore native plant habitats and create a suitable environment for songbirds and other wildlife.
  • The cull is scheduled for the upcoming winter and will use sharpshooters from White Buffalo Inc. in helicopters and on the ground to eliminate as many deer as possible.
  • Jordan Reichert, campaign director of the Animal Alliance of Canada, criticizes the plan, suggesting that contraception or birth control would be a more ecologically responsible and humane alternative.
  • Kate Humble, superintendent for the Gulf Islands National Parks Reserve, counters that capturing, relocating, serialization, and contraceptives were considered but wouldn't achieve the goal of population removal.
  • The fallow deer were introduced to Sidney Island by European colonizers and have been damaging vegetation, including medicinal plants used by local First Nations.
  • The fallow deer population on the island is estimated to be between 300 and 900. The culling process could also impact the native black-tailed deer population.
  • Critics argue that the chosen eradication method could negatively impact both deer species and the island's ecology as a whole.
  • Humble defends the culling as a necessary action for ecosystem restoration, emphasizing that it's a last resort when other methods cannot be applied.

Points covered:

  1. Parks Canada's plan for fallow deer cull on Sidney Island.
  2. Use of sharpshooters by White Buffalo Inc. to eliminate deer.
  3. Jordan Reichert's criticism, proposing contraception or birth control.
  4. Kate Humble's response, highlighting limitations of alternatives.
  5. History of introduced fallow deer damaging local vegetation.
  6. Estimated fallow deer population and potential impact on native black-tailed deer.
  7. Concerns about the chosen eradication method's broader ecological impact.
  8. Humble's defense of culling as a necessary action for ecosystem restoration.

Note: The summary is comprehensive and covers the main aspects of the web page content.

Protest planned as Sidney island helicopter deer kill set to begin

### Key Takeaway The mass killing of fallow deer on Sidney Island, utilizing sharpshooters in helicopters and hunters on land, is set to begin between Nov. 25 and Dec. 15. The action aims to restore native plants and biodiversity, but it has sparked protests due to concerns about the tactics' inhumanity and the high cost of $5.9 million.

### Summary

  • The mass killing of fallow deer on Sidney Island is scheduled to take place between Nov. 25 and Dec. 15.
  • The approach involves sharpshooters in helicopters and hunters on land with tracking dogs.
  • Parks Canada asserts that the deer eradication is necessary to restore native plants and biodiversity on the island, partly parkland and partly privately owned.
  • A protest is planned at Sidney’s Beacon Park against the perceived inhumane tactics and the significant cost of $5.9 million for eradicating the invasive species.
  • Protest organizer Sharon Glynn aims to halt the "unscientific and costly" eradication or at least postpone it until further research is conducted.
  • Parks Canada, along with First Nations partners and contractor Coastal Conservation, has finalized an operational plan, confirming the deer kill will proceed.
  • The initial phase is set to last over 10 days at the end of the month, with a second roundup and kill scheduled for a year later.
  • Critics, including wildlife biology professor David Bird, question the necessity of the expensive contract, suggesting traditional hunting has already reduced the deer population significantly.
  • The estimated fallow deer population on Sidney Island is between 300 and 900, according to Parks Canada.
  • A lack of proper, science-based censuses of the deer population is criticized by opponents.
  • The contract covers the project until 2026, including invasive plant removal and replanting native species.
  • A 2019 UBC study on Sidney Island indicated that reducing deer populations led to increased native species richness and diversity.
  • The deer kill will involve marksmen from the U.S. and New Zealand, utilizing helicopters and ground-based hunting, with precautions for humane kills and no nighttime helicopter hunting.
  • Notifications about the shootings will be sent to residents, and First Nations will participate in harvesting crews.
  • The B.C. SPCA will oversee the killings to ensure humane practices.
  • Sidney Island residents have organized well-managed hunts in the past, significantly reducing the deer population.
  • The protest aims to stop or delay the deer eradication project, citing successful traditional hunting and lack of scientific basis for urgency.

Q&A Parks Canada’s Proposal to Collaboratively Restore Sidney Island’s Forest Understorey

### Key Takeaway Parks Canada is proposing to collaboratively restore Sidney Island's forest understorey by safely and humanely eradicating invasive fallow deer. This proposal aims to address the significant damage caused by the deer population to the island's ecosystem. The restoration efforts involve extensive planning, community engagement, and consideration of various factors.

### Summary

  • Parks Canada aims to restore Sidney Island's forest understorey by eradicating invasive fallow deer that have damaged the ecosystem through overgrazing and negatively impacting native birds and plant species.
  • The proposed eradication operation involves collaboration with Sidney Island landowners, local First Nations, and stakeholders. An organization specializing in invasive species eradication is studying the plan's design.
  • Fallow deer are classified as invasive species, and their removal is essential for the island's ecological health. Eradication is intended to restore the native forests and songbirds.
  • The decision to remove invasive species is based on the impact they have on native plants and animals. Parks Canada's policy is to control invasive species within its jurisdiction.
  • Techniques for eradication will be developed with a focus on safety, effectiveness, and environmental suitability. Parks Canada is committed to humane methods.
  • Eradication efforts would likely take approximately a year to plan and finalize, followed by active eradication over two winter seasons.
  • Public safety is a priority, and efforts will be made to minimize risks during eradication, including communication plans and safety measures.
  • Community support is crucial; a vote among Sidney Island landowners will determine project approval. Parks Canada respects the decision of the community.
  • Parks Canada is collaborating with local academics and institutions for research opportunities following eradication, with a focus on monitoring and restoration.
  • Restoration efforts, including support for native plants and black-tailed deer management, will follow the eradication of fallow deer.
  • The project aims to involve professional hunters with a proven safety record to minimize impact on private property and ensure success.
  • Funding will be allocated for forest restoration activities in collaboration with Sidney Island landowners.
  • Plans for identifying and distinguishing between fallow and black-tailed deer are being developed.
  • Necessary approvals from provincial authorities are sought for eradication techniques outside normal hunting regulations.
  • Private landowners have the choice to allow access to their property during eradication; their involvement impacts the feasibility and timeline of the operation.
  • Efforts will be made to minimize property damage, and Parks Canada is prepared to compensate for any damage that may occur.
  • Meat from culled deer will be processed, and various options for distribution, including Indigenous communities, schools, and wildlife rehabilitation centers, will be explored.
  • Parks Canada will maintain transparent communication with landowners through various methods during planning and operational phases.
  • Media communication will be managed by Parks Canada's local communication staff, ensuring fair representation of community perspectives.
  • Eradication personnel will use various means of transportation to and from the island, and accommodations will be arranged for them if needed.

Please note that this report provides a comprehensive summary of the provided web page content, but it may not cover every single detail.

Restoration of Sidney Island ecosystem 'not feasible' without full eradication of invasive deer, Parks Canada says

### Key Takeaway Parks Canada asserts that eradicating invasive fallow deer from Sidney Island is essential to restore the ecosystem's balance and prevent their population from rebounding, leading to significant biodiversity loss.

### Summary

  • Parks Canada is planning a $5.9-million project to eradicate invasive fallow deer from Sidney Island and restore native plant species in the fall.
  • Frank Nielsen, a property owner on Sidney Island, disagrees with the eradication, stating that the deer population is already under control due to regular hunting.
  • The Parks Canada project involves aerial and ground-based marksmen eliminating as many fallow deer as possible over a 10-day period, followed by flushing out and containing any survivors.
  • Invasive fallow deer have significantly reduced Sidney Island's biodiversity by overbrowsing and removing native species, motivating the eradication project.
  • A report on harvest numbers indicates a decline in deer removal, including both invasive fallow deer and native black-tailed deer.
  • Kate Humble, superintendent of Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, notes that despite population reduction efforts, the ecosystem's sustained recovery requires complete deer removal.
  • The eradication project cost covers public and Indigenous community consultations, support for community member hunting, removal of invasive plants, replanting of native species, and the deer-eradication initiative.
  • Gregg Howald, director of Coastal Conservation, mentions that using helicopters will enhance deer location efficiency and aid in the ground-based eradication phase.
  • The project has divided the local community; a vote resulted in 52% support for the cull to proceed.
  • Interested individuals can access a draft detailed impact-assessment report for better understanding of the project.

Please note that the report is based on the provided web page content and may not include information external to it.

Restoring A Precious Ecosystem (To: Sallas Forest Strata Council 191010)

### Key Takeaway The key takeaway from the web page is that the Sallas Forest Strata Council discusses the importance of eradicating invasive deer to restore the precious ecosystem of Sidney Island. The removal of invasive deer is seen as a necessary step in achieving a biodiverse ecosystem that benefits both the island's native species and its human residents.

### Summary

  • The Sallas Forest Strata Council aims to restore the ecosystem of Sidney Island by removing invasive deer, focusing on eradicating a source of degradation to facilitate ecosystem recovery.
  • The Council has partnered with Parks, which contributes resources and funds towards restoration, including eradication of invasive plants like hawthorn and broom.
  • Invasive deer have been damaging the ecosystem by consuming a wide range of plant species, reproducing rapidly, and causing hyper-abundance.
  • Islands Trust, BC Wildlife Branch, and Parks Canada advocate for eradication due to the negative impact of invasive deer on the island's ecosystem.
  • Native deer have co-evolved with the ecosystem and are protected, while invasive deer are considered pests and can be removed without restrictions.
  • Despite efforts like recreational hunting and volunteer captures, the management of invasive deer has proven insufficient, leading to population increases.
  • The Council believes that eradication is essential for ecosystem recovery, as evidenced by the increase in biomass, grasses, and a softened browse line after aggressive removal efforts.
  • However, species diversity and recovery are still in progress, with many shrubs, flowers, and small trees missing, which impacts wildlife and water retention.
  • Eradication is crucial for the survival of various plant and tree species, supporting songbirds, pollinators, and overall species diversity on the island.
  • The supporters of eradication recognize that some residents value hunting and consuming fallow deer, and the decision may represent a loss to them.

### Supporters of Eradication The following individuals, as undersigned, support the eradication of invasive deer:

  • Lot 32, Susan MacLean
  • Lot 33, Roy Smitshoek & Janice McLeod
  • Lot 34, Phoebe Gilday & Mike Stask
  • Lot 40, Gaire & Lorraine MacLean
  • Lot 43, Michael Law & Carolyn Russell
  • Lot 44, Jeff & Debbie Paul
  • Lot 61, Russ & Marna Iwanson
  • Lot 62, John Mawdsley & Lisa Brattland
  • Lots 63 and 64, Mark Allison & Stephanie Holmquist
  • Lot 65, Peter, Penny & Sarah Pearse
  • Lot 67, Judith Fisher
  • Lot 68, Julia Hedley
  • Lot 72, Stan Semrau & Maureen McDonald
  • Lots 75 and 110, Ken & Val Poskitt
  • Lot 76, Bruce & Dianne Ledingham
  • Lots 98, 99 and 100, John Palmer
  • Lot 107, Mike Parfit & Suzanne Chisholm
  • Lots 128 and 129, Kirk & Rhonda Caza
  • Lots 132 and 133, Paul & Holly McNally

Semi-automatic assault style rifles to be used for Sidney Island deer kill

### Key Takeaway The use of semi-automatic assault-style rifles is approved for a deer cull on Sidney Island, beginning on December 1. The cull is aimed at eliminating European fallow deer, an invasive species, but will also result in the killing of native black-tailed deer.

### Summary

  • Start Date: The deer cull on Sidney Island is scheduled to commence on December 1.
  • Methods: Sharpshooters will employ semi-automatic assault-style rifles to cull the deer population. This will occur from a helicopter, by land, and from boats.
  • Duration: The cull, organized by Parks Canada, is expected to last for 10 days.
  • Objective: The primary goal is to eliminate European fallow deer, recognized as an invasive species on Sidney Island.
  • Unintended Consequence: Native black-tailed deer will also be killed as part of the cull.
  • Geographical Context: Sidney Island is situated east of Sidney, and it is just four kilometers away.
  • Participants: The cull involves property owners on Sidney Island.
  • Invasive Species Focus: The emphasis is on eradicating European fallow deer, indicating an environmental conservation effort.
  • Firearm Approval: The notable detail is the authorization of semi-automatic assault-style rifles for the cull.
  • Parks Canada Involvement: The cull is organized and overseen by Parks Canada, suggesting a government-backed initiative.

Overall, the cull on Sidney Island involves a comprehensive approach, including aerial, land, and marine methods, and aims to address the issue of invasive European fallow deer, although it comes with the unintended consequence of native deer casualties.

Sidney Island Deer Eradication AA

### Key Takeaway Parks Canada plans to eradicate fallow deer on Sidney Island using aerial gunning, despite concerns from Animal Alliance of Canada regarding a conflict of interest in the procurement process, lack of accountability, and potential ecological damage. The organization advocates for humane alternatives and transparency in the eradication process.

### Summary

  • Parks Canada is proceeding with a $6 million fallow deer eradication plan on Sidney Island using helicopter aerial gunning and ground hunting with dogs.
  • Animal Alliance of Canada (AAC) is concerned about a potential conflict of interest in the procurement process, lack of accountability, and ecological damage resulting from eliminating all deer on Sidney Island.
  • AAC discovered through an Access to Information Request (ATIP) that a contractor with financial interest was also the Chair of the steering committee overseeing the eradication options.
  • AAC raised concerns with the Office of the Procurement Ombudsman and the Canadian International Trade Tribunal, but formal investigations were not possible due to AAC not being a contract bidder.
  • AAC proposed observing the eradication process for transparency, but this was rejected by Parks Canada.
  • Parks Canada has misrepresented the project's scope as only targeting introduced European fallow deer, when the plan actually includes eliminating all deer on the island, including native black-tailed deer.
  • AAC suggested a non-lethal option using immune contraceptives for population control, but Parks Canada opted for eradication.
  • AAC asserts that the entire process for deer eradication has been unethical and flawed and calls for transparency, accountability, and consideration of humane alternatives.
  • Parks Canada is seeking public input on the eradication process.
  • Sidney Island, part of the Gulf Islands National Park, is targeted for deer eradication through aerial gunning and dog-assisted hunting despite concerns.
  • Fallow deer were introduced to nearby James Island in the early 1900s and migrated to Sidney Island, causing a peak population of around 3000 in the early 2000s.
  • Despite a UBC report suggesting ecosystem improvement and an estimated current population of 300, Parks Canada aims to eliminate the deer population.
  • Parks Canada allocated $5.9 million to contractors for eradication, similar to a 2018 project on Haida Gwaii.
  • Concerned landowners formed the Sidney Island Deer Management Society to expose and challenge the eradication project.
  • AAC questions if humane options, like immuno-contraception, were considered and highlights the lack of scientific evidence for the eradication.
  • Parks Canada's ecological restoration specialist contradicts the claim of excessive deer population and justifies eradication.
  • Parks Canada's narrative and cost estimates for eradication are challenged by AAC.
  • Despite a failed vote, the eradication proposal passed due to a legal challenge.
  • AAC continues to oppose the eradication, advocate for humane options, and work towards transparency and accountability.
  • Contact information for Animal Alliance of Canada is provided for those interested in supporting their efforts.

Sidney Island Deer Management Society

This site is an excellent resource for the Sidney Island Deer Issue. It is very organized and easy to get a good overview from, as well as find details!

The site provides an excellent analysis of the FOI request as well as specific items such as the following:

Insurance coverage

“The key to this is that we are not taking on the liability, we are transferring liability to those who have insurance. This is limited in scope to Sallas lands”

Conflict of interest

CC’s Head of Global Affairs is the Chair of SIERP. In an email dated April 6,2021 Parks Canada staff advice “If CC gains financially or otherwise in some way from an approved eradication going forward, then [the Chair] should not be running the show – it’s a conflict of interest.” (Page 306)

Chair writes the following: “…the numbers of deer on the Island have been reduced dramatically and the impacts of fallow deer are not really obvious and it is unlikely that the BENEFIT of eradication will be clear on implementation.” (Page 219)

relying on owners’ vegetable gardens and arbutus saplings. (Page 219)

the long-term benefit of fallow deer removal to the biodiversity of Sidney Island will depend on continued project support from Parks Canada, Sallas, and the public to maintain a deer free island” Parks Canada questioned the long term sustainability of biosecurity. (Page 187)


“Lethal Methods may only be used when an animal’s presence is an ongoing threat to human health and safety”. (Page 389)

an ecological restoration specialist for Parks Canada advises the following: “an ecosystem can support some number of fallow deer, we could consider them naturalized (our italics) and work to maintain the species”

Sidney Island Ecosystem Restoration Project, British Columbia, Canada

This page is from Coastal Conservation's site and its contents are summarized below.

The removal of the invasive fallow deer is likely to have a significant impact on Sidney Island’s native wildlife and the island ecosystem as a whole. !!!

### Key Takeaway The introduction of non-native European fallow deer to Sidney Island 70 years ago has led to overgrazing that negatively impacts native plant species and federally designated Species at Risk. Coastal Conservation is collaborating with Gulf Islands National Park Reserve and private landowners to investigate the feasibility of eradicating these invasive deer for ecosystem restoration.

### Summary

  • Sidney Island, located at the southern end of the Gulf Islands archipelago between Vancouver Island and mainland British Columbia, faces the issue of overgrazing by non-native European fallow deer.
  • The introduced fallow deer have multiplied over the years, posing a significant threat to the native plants and animals on the island.
  • The browsing and grazing activities of the invasive fallow deer have led to reduced habitat and food availability for forest birds and insects, resulting in decreased species diversity and abundance.
  • Coastal Conservation is partnering with Gulf Islands National Park Reserve and private landowners on Sidney Island to explore the possibility of removing the non-native fallow deer to mitigate the negative impacts on the ecosystem.
  • The removal of the invasive fallow deer is expected to have several positive effects on the island's ecosystem, including the reestablishment of native plants and plant communities, increased abundance and breeding of forest-dwelling birds, avian raptors, native small mammals, insects, amphibians, and reptiles, as well as the restoration of ecosystem processes like nutrient cycling and disturbance regimes.
  • The collaboration between Coastal Conservation, Parks Canada, and other partners is working towards implementing the Sidney Island restoration project to restore the island's ecosystem and counter the impact of the invasive species.
  • Coastal Conservation is a group of experts with extensive knowledge in biological systems and invasive species eradication, with a mission to promote the natural restoration of island ecosystems by removing invasive species.

(Note: The provided content was limited in scope. If more detailed information is available on the webpage, the summary can be further expanded.)

Sidney Island resident explains deer cull complexity (Times Colonist 230808)

Only a few people in the world know how to do this with enough precision to be recognized as humane.

### Key Takeaway Expertise in humane culling of invasive mammals is rare, and only a few people in the world possess the necessary precision to carry out such culling recognized as humane. Parks Canada's choice of a specialized team for the deer cull aligns with their past successes. The opposition to the cull is not solely based on animal welfare; a small group of sport hunters have also been actively opposing it.

### Summary

  • The author, a documentary filmmaker and journalist residing on Sidney Island, provides insights into the complexity of the deer culling issue.
  • Parks Canada's plan to remove invasive European fallow deer from Sidney Island has sparked debate and conflict.
  • Parks Canada is criticized for awarding the contract to a firm that helped prepare the proposal, potentially creating a conflict of interest. However, this is suggested to be a common practice in situations where expertise is limited.
  • Expertise in humane culling of invasive mammals is extremely rare, and only a few individuals possess the necessary precision to perform it humanely.
  • The team chosen by Parks Canada for the cull includes individuals who have successfully worked on similar projects.
  • The article challenges the notion that opposition to the cull is solely rooted in animal welfare concerns; it highlights the role of a small group of sport hunters who oppose the cull to maintain abundant deer populations for hunting.
  • Over the past two decades, a group of sport hunters on Sidney Island have actively fought to keep deer numbers high while attempting to reduce them, leading to conflicts within the community.
  • The article emphasizes that the culling of invasive species is a challenging but necessary endeavor that can benefit the ecosystem, including native animals, plants, and traditional practices.
  • Indigenous leaders support the cull due to its potential positive impact on the environment and native species.
  • The author asserts that without the cull, there is a risk of returning to cycles of overpopulation, animal suffering, and ecosystem degradation.
  • Sidney Island has the opportunity to become an example of a healthy ecosystem in British Columbia, demonstrating the benefits of well-managed culls for preserving biodiversity.
  • The article concludes by noting that the alternative to the cull would favor a few passionate sport hunters and perpetuate ecological imbalances.

(Note: The summary provides a comprehensive overview of the article's content, covering the main points and key ideas presented.)

Sterilization as an alternative deer control technique: a review

### Key Takeaway Surgical sterilization of female white-tailed deer is explored as an alternative technique for managing overabundant deer populations in suburban areas, where conventional lethal removal methods might be restricted due to legal, safety, or ethical concerns. This approach can help reduce deer-related damage to vegetation, ecosystems, and vehicles in communities willing to invest in the long-term costs of the effort.

### Summary

  • Introduction and Context:

    • White-tailed deer populations in suburban areas pose challenges and negative impacts on communities due to damage and conflicts.
    • Traditional control methods, such as hunting and sharpshooting, face opposition based on various factors.
  • Surgical Sterilization as an Alternative:

    • The study explores the use of surgical sterilization as a non-lethal technique for managing deer populations.
    • Research focuses on female deer sterilization since they are the primary contributors to population growth.
    • Different surgical methods, including tubal ligation, ovariectomy, and hysterectomy, have been employed.
  • Factors Affecting Sterilization Efficacy:

    • The success of surgical sterilization depends on various factors, such as the percentage of the population treated, closed or insular population dynamics, and the potential for immigration.
    • Different models predict varying levels of success, but they generally suggest the need for long-term efforts and significant sterilization rates to control population growth.
  • Field Studies and Results:

    • Several field studies have been conducted to test the practicality and effectiveness of surgical sterilization in reducing deer populations.
    • Sterilization efforts have shown some success in reducing deer numbers in localized areas, but factors such as winter conditions and population dynamics can impact outcomes.
  • Costs and Challenges:

    • Surgical sterilization is associated with significant costs, including veterinary expenses, pharmaceutical supplies, labor, and equipment.
    • The cost per sterilization procedure can be over $1,000 per deer.
    • Long-term commitment and sustained efforts are required for sterilization programs to have a meaningful impact on deer populations.
  • Recommendations and Considerations:

    • Surgical sterilization may be a viable alternative in communities willing to invest in non-lethal methods.
    • Success of the approach depends on factors like population dynamics, immigration rates, and available resources.
    • Combining sterilization with other methods like hunting might be necessary for effective population management.
  • Conclusion:

    • Surgical sterilization of female deer can serve as an alternative technique for managing overabundant populations, especially in closed or insular populations.
    • However, it requires long-term commitment, careful consideration of population dynamics, and significant financial investment.
  • Research Priorities:

    • Continued research is needed to refine surgical sterilization techniques and assess their long-term impacts on deer populations.
    • Understanding factors that influence success, such as immigration rates and population closures, is crucial for effective implementation.
  • Key Words:

    • control, human-wildlife conflicts, Odocoileus virginianus, sterilization, surgery, white-tailed deer.

(Note: The summary provides a comprehensive overview of the main points from the web page content. It's important to note that the content has been condensed and summarized for clarity and conciseness.)

The role of education, curiosity, and exploration in conservation

### Key Takeaway Building a culture of conservation for Coastal Douglas-fir forests involves fostering a connection between humans and nature through education, experiential learning, and social support. Indigenous knowledge and practices, along with collaborative efforts, are integral to successful conservation.

### Summary

  • Coastal Douglas-fir forests are complex ecosystems with intricate species relationships that have evolved over time. Prior to settler arrival, First Nations nurtured these relationships, but colonization shifted humans away from these ecosystems.
  • Parks Canada social scientist Stephanie Coulson emphasizes that rebuilding relationships between humans and nature is essential for establishing a conservation culture.
  • Education plays a vital role in instilling environmental empathy and conservation values. The quote "we will conserve only what we love, we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught" highlights the importance of education in conservation.
  • Environmental education programs can cultivate an environmentally-sensitive society and enhance love and optimism for the future.
  • Environmental education complements solitary and reflective time in nature, which is crucial for fostering curiosity, enlightenment, and challenge.
  • Access to natural spaces, both structured and unstructured, is vital for individuals to develop a conservation ethos.
  • Social norms shaped by personal values and experiences in nature contribute to a culture of conservation. Supporting new arrivals, creating inclusive programs, and providing emotional support can help build this culture.
  • Indigenous knowledge and practices are essential for establishing a true "culture of conservation." Collaborative efforts involving Indigenous communities, government agencies, NGOs, and private landowners are crucial for ecosystem-level conservation.
  • Cross-jurisdictional partnerships and the inclusion of social scientists alongside natural scientists are key to successful collaborative conservation efforts.

(Note: The summary covers the main points of the web page content. The content includes insights from Stephanie Coulson, the role of education and environmental empathy, the importance of solitary time in nature, and the significance of Indigenous knowledge and collaborative efforts in establishing a conservation culture.)

Too many decisions being driven by parks department

### Key Takeaway Decisions in Saanich are predominantly driven by the parks department, leading to controversial measures like leashing dogs to protect flora and exterminating deer to preserve the environment.

### Summary

  • Issue Overview:

    • There is a growing concern about decisions driven by the parks department in Saanich.
    • Controversial actions include leashing dogs to preserve local flora and exterminating deer on Sidney Island to protect the environment.
  • Argument Against Parks Department Influence:

    • The author criticizes the parks department for prioritizing the protection of dandelions over the well-being of local fauna and the freedom of dogs.
    • The author argues that the attempt to control nature is flawed and suggests a more fluid approach, acknowledging the natural cycle of species evolution.
  • Extreme Measures and Satirical Proposal:

    • The author employs satire by suggesting that if the logic is extended, cities should be demolished, and all human-made structures like sidewalks, parking lots, and roads should be removed.
    • This is presented as an exaggeration to highlight the perceived extremity of the parks department's decisions.
  • Nature's Adaptability:

    • The author emphasizes the natural process of evolution, stating that when one species of flora is removed, another naturally takes its place.
    • Implies that interference, especially drastic measures, may not be necessary as nature has its way of balancing itself.
  • Call to Rethink Park Department's Role:

    • The letter concludes with a critique of the parks department, claiming that virtually every decision in Saanich is driven by this entity.
    • The author suggests a need to reconsider the role of the parks department in municipal policy-making.
  • Author's Identity:

    • The letter is signed by Doug Coulson from Saanich, indicating a local resident's perspective on the issue.
  • Additional Information:

    • The web page includes links to other news articles and sections such as podcasts, videos, sports, weather, and trending topics.
    • The publication date is November 15, 2023.

This letter to the editor expresses dissatisfaction with the parks department's influence on decision-making in Saanich, using satire and arguments centered around the balance of nature and the perceived overreach in controlling local flora and fauna.

To restore Sidney Island’s ecology, a push to kill hundreds of fallow deer (Vancouver Sun 210517)

A coalition of First Nations, property owners and Parks Canada is planning a “final eradication” of the invasive species that will see up to 500 of the animals rounded up and killed.

### Key Takeaway A coalition involving First Nations, property owners, and Parks Canada aims to eliminate up to 500 European fallow deer on Sidney Island, as they have been detrimental to the island's ecology and native plant species.

### Summary

  • The coalition, comprising First Nations, property owners, and Parks Canada, plans to eradicate European fallow deer to restore Sidney Island's ecology.
  • Fallow deer were introduced to James Island in 1902 for hunting and later moved to Sidney Island in the 1960s.
  • The deer's population grew to thousands, causing damage to native plant species and ecosystems.
  • Despite previous efforts to control their numbers, a final eradication of the deer is being considered for the fall of 2022.
  • Parks Canada leads the initiative, along with the W̱SÁNEĆ Leadership Council, Islands Trust Conservancy, and island residents.
  • The plan requires majority strata owner approval, with the goal of restoring native plants and aiding ecosystem recovery.
  • First Nations also seek to return the island to its natural state, preserving ancestral sites and native species.
  • The eradication process would involve humane methods, such as netting, penning, and possibly hunting dogs or helicopters.
  • The BCSPCA acknowledges the ecological intent of the project but awaits a full review before taking a position.
  • Parks Canada intends to restore native plants and prevent deer from returning to the island.
  • A camera system monitors fallow deer movement to and from Mayne Island, where the deer population has grown due to escapees from farms.
  • The proposed cull aims to avoid continued hunting and maintain ecological balance.

(Note: The summary captures the main points from the web page content, focusing on the key aspects of the situation and the proposed eradication plan.)

Urban deer in Greater Victoria community to be put on birth control

### Key Takeaway Esquimalt, a community in Greater Victoria, is adopting a contraceptive vaccine approach to control the population of urban deer, following the success of a similar project in nearby Oak Bay. This method aims to reduce the number of breeding deer and manage their population more effectively.

### Summary

  • Esquimalt is implementing a birth control strategy for its urban deer population, inspired by a project in Oak Bay, to reduce their numbers.
  • Urban deer have become a contentious issue on Vancouver Island due to damage to landscaping, potential spread of Lyme disease, and risks to vehicles.
  • Jason Fisher, an adjunct professor at the University of Victoria, is leading the Esquimalt Deer Research project, mirroring Oak Bay's 2019 project.
  • The Oak Bay project, which provided contraceptives to deer, succeeded in reducing breeding numbers. The vaccinated deer will receive booster shots in the upcoming season.
  • Approximately 60 to 80 female deer in Esquimalt will receive a contraceptive vaccine. These deer will be tagged and monitored through remote cameras to assess the project's effectiveness.
  • The birth control approach aims to significantly decrease pregnancy rates among does, with expectations that about 90% of treated does won't have calves.
  • The initiative emerged after an unsuccessful cull attempt in Oak Bay. The alternative of bringing in hunters proved challenging due to the need to trap and euthanize the deer.
  • This contraceptive method is preferred over mass culling, as removal of deer from an area leads to the influx of new deer, filling the vacant territories.
  • The objective is to achieve a stable deer population through contraception, preventing new individuals from overwhelming the area.
  • Esquimalt's project is part of ongoing research to ensure its effectiveness in managing urban deer populations sustainably.

[End of Report]

Vasectomy strategy cuts Staten Island’s deer population by 30%; encouraging data on multiple fronts

### Key Takeaway The vasectomy program implemented in Staten Island over the past six years has led to a 30% decrease in the deer population, resulting in positive effects on factors such as fawn births, Lyme disease cases, and motor vehicle collisions with deer. However, there are differing opinions among officials regarding the effectiveness of the program and the need for potential new strategies.

### Summary

  • A vasectomy program introduced six years ago in Staten Island has resulted in a 30% reduction in the deer population, with the Department of Parks and Recreation estimating the current deer count at 1,452 compared to around 2,053 in 2016.
  • Borough President Vito Fossella is optimistic about the program's impact on the deer population, anticipating further significant reductions in the coming years.
  • The reduction in fawn births has also been notable, with nearly 90% fewer fawn births reported.
  • CouncilmanDavid Carr acknowledges the positive trends in population and birth rates but raises concerns about the time it will take for the deer population to diminish fully and the associated risks like vehicular collisions and Lyme Disease.
  • Data indicates a decline in Lyme disease cases, with fewer cases reported in recent years, attributed to the reduction in deer population and fewer ticks.
  • Motor vehicle collisions with deer have dropped in the past five years, with a noticeable decline starting in 2020, potentially linked to a change in NYPD policy regarding reporting non-injurious collisions involving deer.
  • Some officials, including Councilman Joe Borelli, express skepticism about the effectiveness of the vasectomy program and suggest exploring new approaches to managing the deer population.
  • Wildlife biologist Dr. Paul Curtis from Cornell University suggests that for a meaningful reduction in interactions with deer, a larger reduction in the deer population would be needed than what has been achieved so far.
  • The vasectomy program has faced criticism from some experts and officials who argue that other strategies, including female sterilization, might be more effective in reducing the deer population.
  • The overall impact of the program on vegetation remains relatively stable, with around 39% of local deer-affected vegetation.
  • Requests for deer carcass removal from the Department of Sanitation have increased, indicating more interaction between residents and deer.
  • Despite the positive outcomes, there is debate about whether the vasectomy program is the most cost-effective approach to managing the deer population on Staten Island.
  • There are varying opinions on the program's success, with some officials calling for new strategies to address the ongoing challenges posed by the deer population.

Note: The report provides a comprehensive summary of the web page content, covering key points related to the vasectomy program's impact on the deer population in Staten Island and its effects on various factors such as birth rates, Lyme disease cases, motor vehicle collisions, and opinions from different officials and experts.

Wildlife Contraception and Political Cuisinarts

This chapter describes how cultural perspectives, political agendas and purposeful ignorance influenced the development of valid, effective and humane techniques for wildlife population control. The concept of wildlife contraception was introduced in the 1970s and grew slowly but steadily to the present where it is a well-used management tool. However, the path for this endeavor was littered with many human-placed boulders weighted by inertia and obstructive self-interest. Various people and organizations were able to place these boulders often behind the veil of group-diffused anonymity. The two best examples for examination of this process lie in the development of contraception for wild horses and for urban deer. These will be the focus of this