Sharpshooters are out: Keep animals in
Ann Arbor deer cull begins at the end of January
Ann Arbor will be using taxpayer money and the University of Michigan will be using funding to shoot and sterilize deer in parks and on undisclosed private lands January 22 through February 13, 2017.
Please be aware that 10 parks and nature areas, Nichols Arboretum and several other University lands will be closed every day (including weekends) from January 30 through February 13 from 3 p.m. until midnight (see list below). The City has said they will notify people who live next to these parks, but may not be notifying neighbors of shooting in private undisclosed lands -- generating concern over wandering companion animals.
Please keep your Ann Arbor companion animals inside and/or dressed in "blaze orange" January 22 through February 13.
As an organization with experience in animal population control and one that's helped wildlife in this community for over 50 years, we're disappointed with the City's and University's decision. With everything we know currently, both culling and sterilization are an unnecessary investment of time and money. Wildlife experts agree Ann Arbor does not have an overpopulation, but rather an issue of social intolerance. Some have landscape complaints, and some believe our parks should be "living laboratories" instead of places for all to enjoy.
Intolerance, violence and myopia are expensive. The deer cull and sterilization are set to cost the City over $250,000 this year alone. The cheapest, most effective, safest, most humane, most collaborative way of handling human conflict with wildlife is through education and smart prevention strategies. And we don’t have to recreate the wheel.
We can look to Rochester Hills’ successful model nonlethal strategies and site-specific mitigation methods that include road improvements and deer resistant gardening, that resulted in decreased complaints and a decline in collisions. They even recently reported a 20% decrease in population – by doing nothing to the population at all. Costing about $2000 a year.
The City of Ann Arbor has announced that from January 30 through February 13, 2017 the below parks will be closed every day (including weekends) for all purposes from 3 p.m. to midnight so that contracted sharpshooters can kill deer. Please, keep your animals and families safe by keeping them inside and/or wearing hunter orange. See the map of public closures here.
• Bird Hills Nature Area
January 30 through February 2, the following University of Michigan properties will be closed every day from 3 p.m. to midnight to allow contracted sharpshooters to kill deer: