Ashland residents discuss concerns over deer at special meeting

Ashland, Ore.–¬†You usually won’t see just one deer, but several in Ashland’s Lithia Park. “I love watching the deer,” said Sally Telpner. People also love snapping pictures.

For decades Sally and her husband have gone to the park to take a stroll and watch the deer. But not everyone feels the same.

There wasn’t an empty seat inside city council chambers Tuesday. Close to 70 people addressed concerns about the deer population and their own safety.

They described their dangerous encounters with Mayor John Stromberg knows about the deer problem and called for a deer summit, a public hearing to talk about solutions to the deer issue. Stromberg said,

“There are 200 deer in Ashland. 62 were found dead from August 2014-August 2015.”
Part of the problem, deer are getting used to people.

City Council Woman Carol Voisin who is also part of the Wildlife Committee said it is illegal in the state of Oregon to feed deer or any wildlife. In Ashland you can face a fine of up to $600.00.

There’s also the issue of Lyme Disease. Deer often have ticks.

Nurse, Judith Johnston contracted the disease. “Deer carry thousands of ticks on them.” At the meeting people threw out suggestions like relocating the deer, giving them birth control, and killing them.

Whether its near the Railroad District or at the park, Ashlanders want a solution. The city plans to work with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to figure out a solution that works for everyone.

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