Oak Bay plans to use contraceptive to combat high deer population by fall
Over the last 10 years Oak Bay has seen “incredible growth” in the deer herd.
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Tuesday, April 10, 2018 4:32PM PDT
Last Updated Tuesday, April 10, 2018 5:03PM PDT
The municipality of Oak Bay is eyeing a new tool to deal with its escalating deer population: birth control.
The Victoria suburb is currently planning a new approach to deal with what's being called the highest deer population ever seen in the area.
It involves giving does a contraceptive vaccine that would be administered by the non-profit Urban Wildlife Stewardship Society.
Mayor Nils Jensen said it's an approach that wasn't available to the community back in 2015, when it culled 11 deer.
That strategy sparked criticism from animal rights groups, while some residents wanted the cull to stop deer from eating their gardens and hedges.
"Going back three years when we were doing a cull, that was our only option and the province made that very clear to us," said Jensen. "They would not permit relocating the deer, there was no serum available for deer birth control, so things have changed."
If Oak Bay's plan is approved by the province, the birth control serum would be administered sometime before the fall.
Phase one of the community's deer management strategy saw twenty does tagged with radio collars to track their movement and behaviours.