Rock Island Council Hears Deer Population Options - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Rock Island Council Hears Deer Population Options

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Rock Island city leaders learned in May up to 800 deer roam the city.

Chewing people's plants and running across roads.

The city parks director spent the last few months coming up with options, his three main options follow a very similar path.

Hunting:

Either let the public harvest the deer, or pay a police officer or contractor to be a sharpshooter.

Those are the city's best suggestions for now, as it figures out how to control its deer population.

The city parks director says other options were too expensive and didn't work very well.

Options like chemically or surgically sterilizing the deer.

Other cities allow hunting in their city limits and have reported success.

It wouldn't be a free for all if the city approved such a change.

The recommendation would only open up the city to bow hunting and only in areas that have deer problems and property owners willing to let hunters in.

They'd have to set up a blind at a certain height to assure any arrows fired would aim toward the ground.

Not all aldermen seemed comfortable with the idea, and some don't want to see hunting at all.

Instead, alderman Stephen Tollenaer favors trapping and moving the animals.

"At least they have a fighting chance, I just think, I think there's larger safety concerns in the city of Rock Island with archers," says Tollenaer.

The city council agrees something needs to be done.

Urban area's should ideally have no more than 10 to 20 deer per square mile.

Rock Island's numbers range from 24 to 47 deer per square mile.

The city council will continue discussing its options.

It hopes to have a plan in place before the fall hunting season begins.

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