Back in January, a judge okayed federal sharpshooters to kill 100 deer over a three-month period in the controversial Ann Arbor deer cull.
But that’s not the story to hunters in the city and state. At issue is the attitude of U.S. District Judge Arthur Tarnow, who ruled to allow the deer cull to proceed using the sharpshooters.
Tarrow, in his ruling, praised the city for using federal sharpshooters “rather than have traditional hunters with carrots and six packs of beer” reduce the herd.
The story began when complaints from residents about deer disease, damage to the landscape and car-deer accidents motivated the city council to come up with a plan to reduce the herd. The city council approved the plan in November to spend up to $35,000 on the project.
That plan is to use federal sharpshooters to kill up to 100 deer through March in 26 city-owed parks and natural areas. The “hunting” will take place between 4 and 7 p.m. The parks will be closed and residents notified.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Wildlife Services Division, is overseeing the cull. The project entered the court system when a group filed a lawsuit claiming that the city council “quietly and quickly approved an unlawful deer-kill plan” for a problem the group says doesn’t exist.
The group is also concerned about public safety. While Tarnow didn’t dismiss the lawsuit, allowing the group to amend its lawsuit due to some differences, and allowing the defendant 21 days to file motions to dismiss, the herd reduction continues.
But seriously, “traditional hunters with carrots and six packs of beer”?