Mandated Deer Kills Move to East Lansing

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Meridian Township has a chronic wasting disease problem - and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources says East Lansing will have to control its deer population to keep the disease at bay.

Cathy DeShambo of East Lansing Environmental Services says the city first tried non-lethal ways of controlling the population.

"We've really taken a thoughtful, slow approach to this plan because we understand that people can have a wide variety of opinions about deer management," DeShambo said.

She says using deer-resistant plants and fencing didn't do enough.

The city also passed an ordinance in the spring banning feeding deer. "One of the things that will draw deer into a neighborhood and cause problems in people's yards is to have your neighbor feeding the deer," DeShambo said. "Of course they're going to want to wander into your yard as well."

Robert Posey spoke out about the cull at the East Lansing City Council meeting Tuesday. He doesn't want to see the deer in his community killed. "People enjoy running into them," Posey said. "They're friendly, timid, sweet sensitive beautiful creatures and anyone that walks through that area is actually hoping to see them."

The city will have a public hearing on November 17 about changing the city's ordinances to allow deer hunting in public parks.

"Right now it's just really important that our ordinance sets us up so, if the city were to make decisions to conduct further culls, we would be in that position to do that," DeShambo said. She says if the ordinance is passed the cull would begin at the end of November, or beginning of December.

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