City announces locations for deer cull

Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 6:41pm

Update: The City of Ann Arbor has altered the park closing schedule below to only include weekdays. Parks will be open all day on Saturdays and Sundays. 

Amid protests and a push to recall several Councilmembers over the issue, the City of Ann Arbor has announced planned areas and times for a deer cull.

The cull will occur in various Ann Arbor parks across Wards 1 and 2, according to an announcement from the city Tuesday evening. The parks will be closed every day starting January 1 through March 31 from 4 p.m. to 7 a.m. to carry out the deer management plan, according to the announcement.

In August, City Council approved the deer cull with an 8-1 vote as a measure to control the city’s growing deer population. Ann Arbor Mayor Christopher Taylor was the only councilmember to oppose the cull.

Opponents of the cull have cited public safety concerns, as well as questioned its effectiveness.

Sharpshooters will kill 100 deer and remove them from the following parks: Arbor Hills Nature Area, Argo Nature Area, Bandemer Nature Area, Barton Nature Area, Bird Hills Nature Area, Black Pond Woods Nature Area, Bluffs Nature Area, Braun Nature Area,  Cedar Bend Nature Area, Dhu Varren Woods Nature Area, Foxfire South Nature Area,  Foxfire West Nature Area, Furstenberg Nature Area, Huron Parkway Nature Area, Kuebler Langford Nature Area, Leslie Park Golf Course,  Leslie Woods Nature Area, Narrow Gauge Nature Area, Oakridge Nature Area, Oakwoods Nature Area, Olson Park, Onder Nature Area, Ruthven Nature Area, South Pond Nature Area,  Stapp Nature Area and Traver Creek Nature Area.

The cull is restricted to city-owned property, though several of the parks — such as Bandemer Nature Area and Argo Nature Area — are within a few miles of campus.

The announcement said the areas were chosen based several factors: public safety, the size and shape of the property, the terrain, surrounding land-use and housing density, proximity to neighborhoods and ease of access and attractiveness of the location for deer.

The sharpshooters will be United States Department of Agriculture and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service personnel trained to carry out a cull in an urban area like Ann Arbor.