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 email@example.com.