Last week, a group of Town and Country residents installed signs along Clayton Road and other streets in the city. The signs call for no lethal methods to control deer in Town and Country.
The signs came days after Captain Gary Hoelzer presented his final deer-management recommendation to the Town and Country board of aldermen.
(Read Previous Story: )
In his report, Hoelzer recommended decreasing the city's deer population to 30 deer per square mile, or 300 total deer within the city. That's down from the current 66 deer per square mile, or 660 total. Hoelzer said after extensive research, sharpshooting was the quickest, most effective method to attain that goal.
"Sharpshooting will get you the number faster," Hoelzer previously told Town and Country-Manchester Patch. "Once you achieve the initial population goals, then you can maintain the goal in a number of ways."
However, the recent signs in residents' yards and along roadways show not everyone is in favor of this deer-control method.
The signs point to the website www.saferesponsibledeermanagement.org. On it, residents can submit their contact information to receive more information about non-lethal methods of deer management.
The site lists Traci Cardenas, Town and Country resident, as a contact for more information on deer management. Cardenas told Town and Country-Manchester Patch that she is not technically a spokesperson, but simply a volunteer for the group. She also said the group has no president or leader and its size is unknown.
“We are a robust group with each ward in Town and Country represented,” Cardenas said.
Cardenas said the goal of the group is to create awareness in the community of other ways to manage deer than through lethal methods.
"We are trying to make the community aware that non-lethal methods of deer management proves to be cost-efficient, effective and safe,” Cardenas said. “Town and Country promotes itself as a wildlife corridor. They should manage that wildlife with the will of the people.”
Cardenas said she has not heard any feedback from any aldermen on the signs.
Town and Country Ward 3 Alderman Fred Meyland-Smith, a member of the deer taskforce, said when the signs went up, he talked to some of the property owners who had signs in their front yards. Meyland-Smith, however, said he did not wish to make any further comments regarding the signs.
Ward 2 Alderman Al Gerber, who is a member of the Conservation and Historic Preservation Commission, said he knows most of the citizens involved in the campaign. He said he applauds any time citizens are active in the local government and that it is good they are letting their aldermen know how they feel.
Although the group calls for only non-lethal methods of deer reduction, Gerber said there must be a balance approach.
“I think we (the board of aldermen) are realistic in the fact that you can’t really get the population down fast with sterilization only. You have to have some sharpshooting to get the population reduced quickly,” Gerber said.
Read Previous Stories: