Deer remains baffle officers
Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 08:38 am
Parks and wildlife officials are disappointed after the remains of a deer were discovered in an Okotoks park, likely by a hunter.
The Town received a report from an Okotoks resident who saw part of a deer carcass at the Crystal Ridge storm pond. Officials believe it was illegally disposed of by a hunter.
Rob Dipalo, Fish and Wildlife High River District officer, said hunters are required to take animal carcasses to the Foothills Regional Landfill.
“There is no excuse for hunters to be doing anything than take it to the landfill,” he said, adding under the environmental protection enhancement act the typical fine for improper disposal of waste on public land is $115.
Dipalo said animal carcasses attract predators, which is a danger in town.
Daryn Hitchner, Town of Okotoks irrigation technician, was one of the Town staff sent to retrieve what was left of the animal. He said a hunter likely skinned the animal in a garage and threw the hide and intestines into the park.
“We walked the whole perimeter of the park and couldn’t find any bones or any (other) remnants of the deer,” he said. “When a predator gets a deer there are signs of a struggle, but this was definitely just someone dumping a carcass.”
Town of Okotoks Open Spaces team leader Christa Michailuck said it’s unusual for a deer carcass to be disposed of in such a public place.
“It’s disappointing that people would dump stuff in parks,” she said. “It’s not what other residents want to encounter when they want to enjoy the parks.”
Okotoks’ municipal enforcement team leader Tim Stobbs said there are only three or four cases he’s aware of where animal parts were disposed of in public areas in Okotoks during the last eight years.
Dipalo’s office receiving calls almost daily after hunting season reporting disposed of carcasses and hides, but mostly in rural areas, he said.
“I haven’t seen very many situations where people dump it into town,” he said. “Most people drop it off on the side of the road somewhere.”