Council gets explanation of deer control methods in and around Truro

After years of discussion, the Town of Truro has a plan of action for the long-standing deer issue.

Public Works director Andrew MacKinnon walked council through a series of steps that were discussed last Thursday in a meeting with the Department of Lands and Forestry (DLF).

Signage will be placed in areas around the town, such as East Prince Street and the corner of Young and Brunswick streets, which spell out the current bylaws to get people's attention and reinforce a ban on feeding the deer.

MacKinnon says staff have been in discussion with the Nova Scotia Federation of Anglers and Hunters and Millbrook First Nation about a group of skilled bow hunters who will be given permission to hunt on town land, such as the watershed areas but nowhere in the town limits itself.

He says the hunters would have GPS units so they know which areas they are allowed to be in, and another meeting is scheduled this Thursday with the federation.

DLF controls enforcement, and some areas around the town would have increased buffer zones.

The department also wants at least three years of data, so the annual pellet survey will be conducted for another two years, at which point a decision will be made based on the data as to whether provincial regulations will be made to allow an urban hunt.

The presentation to council says, if justified by the data, nuisance licences would be issued for areas identified as "problematic", and the consent of property owners may be required in some situations.