BOUNTIFUL - A deer plan and no feeding of deer resolution were expected to be approved by the Bountiful City Council Tuesday night, as the Clipper went to press.
The Urban Deer Control Plan would include continuing a pilot project with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.
A trap and relocate program is proposed as part of the formal ordinance. It would continue a pilot project that has involved non-lethal trapping and relocating of deer from Bountiful Ridge Golf Course and the city’s new Mill Street park site.
The feeding of deer is prohibited under the new ordinance, and was a requirement requested by DWR for it to continue its involvement.
At a recent city council/mayor retreat, council members emphasized support for a non-lethal approach to controlling the deer population.
That differs from a program a couple of years ago where about 16 deer were removed, by lethal means.
“Bountiful has within its limits urban deer in such numbers they are a threat to the safety of people and property and constitute a public nuisance,” the resolution said.
Estimates of deer within the city range from at least “several hundred and may be over a thousand,” it was noted in the Urban Deer Control Plan.
Police Chief Tom Ross said over the years, deer have migrated in an ever-more-westward route. They’re now seen as far west as Main Street, he said.
He said some homeowners are afraid to allow their pets, or even children in the yard because of the large number of deer.
“While the deer are a beautiful presence of nature, they are also a danger to human safety and destructive of public and private property,” the resolution said.
The control plan’s goal is to “reduce, and then limit on an ongoing basis, the urban deer population to levels consistent with public safety and tolerance and practicality.”
The pilot program aims to “remove a substantial number of deer from within city limits.” That goal is to remove 150 deer.
The issue has been a concern to city officials and some residents for several years.
A 2010 public hearing saw a packed city council chambers where a large variety of opinions were expressed.
Under the deer feeding prohibition ordinance, feeding of deer is prohibited. That slo includes making food available for deer use. Property owners are directed to remove any materials placed on their property to feed deer. Failure to do so within 24 hours will be considered an offense.