DEER

No feeding the deer allowed?

2013-03-22T05:05:00Z No feeding the deer allowed?JOE FERGUSON Sun Staff Reporter Arizona Daily Sun
March 22, 2013 5:05 am  • 

The Flagstaff City Council will decide in the coming weeks whether feeding deer, skunks or rabbits is for the birds.

The Council is expected to formally discuss a ban on feeding wildlife in the coming weeks, prompted by a request from the Continental Country Club homeowner's association.

The group approached Mayor Jerry Nabours several weeks ago, explaining it had no legal power to stop one resident from leaving out food for elk and deer on his property, despite the repeated objections of neighbors.

Some residents were reportedly upset that the wild animals were tearing up well-manicured lawns as well as leaving behind steaming piles of waste, Nabours said.

John Malin, the former general manager of the Continental Country Club, confirmed that the HOA had a problem with one resident who was leaving out seed for elk and animals.

The current general manager for Continental Country Club did not return a call asking for comment on the issue.

Nabours said the problem isn't just aesthetic one, noting the police department reports nearly 30 accidents involving deer and elk in the last two years inside the city limits.

The issue also has support from the Arizona Game and Fish Department, which supported a 2006 bill to make it illegal to feed larger animals in both Pima and Maricopa counties.

A spokesperson for Game and Fish was unavailable for comment, but the state agency's website suggests feeding wildlife could attract rodents and predators.

Wild animals also could become comfortable with human interaction, leading to them becoming aggressive when food becomes scarce, the website says.

While there is no formal proposal for a city ordinance, Nabours said he would only support a new law that would not prohibit residents from continuing to feed birds and squirrels.

The mayor has support from a majority of the Council to formally discuss the issue, but it is unclear when the issue will be brought back before the seven-person legislative body.

Joe Ferguson can be reached at 556-2253 or jferguson@azdailysun.com.

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(3) Comments

  1. DJ
    Report Abuse
    DJ - March 24, 2013 5:26 pm
    There is no such law. The deer eat whatever is spilled from the bird and swuirrel feeders. So do the skunks and racccoons. The HOA tried to use the "nuisance" clause but coudln't restrict just one homeowner when the deer feed in all our yards. This is about one sqeaky wheel with his knickers in a twist because he didn't get his way.
  2. CDriveCody
    Report Abuse
    CDriveCody - March 22, 2013 7:29 pm
    This is awful. Does anyone even know what this area man is feeding the deer and skunks? He could be giving them processed foods and sweets that they can't digest, or possibly food that could even be poisonous. The law needs to step in and do something about this. If the law can't resolve this situation then we need to have a city council meeting on the issue immediately.
  3. libflag
    Report Abuse
    libflag - March 22, 2013 10:49 am
    Why should the City Council waste time on this...there is already a law prohibiting the feeding of wild animals in Arizona Revised Statutes. And there is also this State agency call Game and Fish that, the last time I checked deal with wildlife issues, has the Council called them?
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