Deer culling is barbaric and unnecessary

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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It's disturbing to think that any of our River Forest village leaders would support anything as illogical as deer culling. This would not stop deer from wandering out of the woods in the future. It's barbaric.

Look around, have you actually seen any deer lately outside the woods?

To those who have contracted Lyme disease, it's awful. But there is no proof it came from deer wandering from our local woods. Shooting random deer addresses that problem? I think not.

There are more evolved and compassionate ways to handle this situation.

The Illinois state animal is the white tailed deer. Isn't it protected?

It would be good to see the anger over a minor thing like deer droppings focused on littering, as littering has far worse consequences.

Jayne Gould

River Forest

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Reader Comments

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Tommy McCoy  

Posted: January 13th, 2020 1:17 PM

Mark Graham Thank you for explaining how the Deer, are not stupid and will move to the outskirts to save their own live's instead of going for the bait. It certainly is a good thing that the Deer, do not have any weapon's and need to rely on their wits to survive being sniped. I really do understand the agony of slow death by starvation, although I have not seen it in River Forest

Mark Graham from Oak Park  

Posted: January 13th, 2020 11:51 AM

Cook County Forest Preserve District has good information on how the culls are run. These typically occur between late December and February, so if one is to happen adjacent to River Forest this year it will be soon. Bait stations, typically using corn grain, are set up in areas of the preserves that are at least 900 feet from any house (this seems to rule out Jefferson Woods). The hunt areas are closed to the public about 3 PM, at which time the hunters will enter and take concealed positions near the bait stations where they can fire a little downhill and toward the center of the preserve, waiting. Then around dusk, when any deer have gathered to eat the corn, they will be shot, with the meat ground up and distributed to charities and institution that accept venison (which is pretty good eating, from personal experience). I think they will have a hard time getting the targeted 50 deer from preserves adjacent to River Forest. The areas where the hunts can occur are limited by the 900 foot rule and the deer are not that stupid, they will move to the edges of the preserves. Sometimes it takes months to get the required number of deer.

Tommy McCoy  

Posted: January 13th, 2020 10:40 AM

Any one recall the last time they have seen a Deer, look like it was starved or rotting carcasses in River Forest, although I do understand what Ray Simpson is writing

William Dwyer Jr.  

Posted: January 13th, 2020 7:11 AM

I agree completely with Simpson on this. The "illogical" approach is to allow overpopulation to lead to available problems in the human population and serious pain and suffering for the deer. Cook County has been culling the deer population for a number of years now. The alternative is slow and painful death through starvation and disease for many excess deer. That just a hard, immutable fact. Life ain't fair, and nature can be really cruel.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 13th, 2020 7:04 AM

Culling a heard is NOT barbaric, it is smart management of resources for the deer. Left to themselves deer will expand their numbers beyond the ability of the heard to find food, resulting in starvation and a poorer health for the entire group. Rotting carcasses in our forest preserves will attract other less desirable animals that feed on carrion. Deer droppings are not the issue, sick animals that die degrade the health of the entire population is! This may seem like a cold hard .approach but, consider the alternative! Not pretty.

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