Ann Arbor limiting park times during controversial deer cull

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Beginning in January, there will be no more late night or early morning visits to 26 parks and nature areas in Ann Arbor due to a controversial deer cull.

The cull will last for three months and is designed to kill about 100 deer in the area.

“For a taxpayer, someone who pays to keep these public lands open and cared for and for public use, that’s a big concern,” said Amy Chavasse.

Chavasse often walks her dog late at night through popular parks in Ann Arbor.

Many of those parks will be closing at 4 p.m.

The Ann Arbor City Council voted last month 10 – 1 to hire trained sharpshooters to safely cull deer in the city. The city says many residents complain about deer damaging gardens and landscaping.

“They sometimes eat my hyacinths and I get a little pissed about it,” Chavasse said. “I guess I didn’t realize how big the population was.”

The city believes closing the parks daily from 4 p.m. – 7 a.m. for three months is a safe solution.

“I believe this is the only legal plan for controlling the population in deer,” said City Council Member Sabra Briere. “We are hamstrung by the fact that no one has successfully found an alternative.”

Those opposed to the city’s plan say there are other alternatives and they plan to continue to challenge the council about the issue.

“Rochester Hills is a great example for all communities that took an educational approach and provided better road signage and that taught people how to plant differently,” said Tanya Hilgendorf.

The following parks will be closed Jan. 1 – March 31.

Arbor Hills Nature Area

Argo Nature Area

Bandemer Nature Area

Barton Nature Area

Bird Hills Nature Area

Black Pond Woods Nature Area

Bluffs Nature Area

Braun Nature Area

Cedar Bend Nature Area

Dhu Varren Woods Nature Area

Foxfire South Nature Area

Foxfire West Nature Area

Furstenberg Nature Area

Huron Parkway Nature Area

Kuebler Langford Nature Area

Leslie Park Golf Course

Leslie Woods Nature Area

Narrow Gauge Nature Area

Oakridge Nature Area

Oakwoods Nature Area

Olson Park

Onder Nature Area

Ruthven Nature Area

South Pond Nature Area

Stapp Nature Area

Traver Creek Nature Area


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