N.B. town overrun by deer considers cull, birth control
They may look cute, but a New Brunswick town is so sick of the deer roaming its streets that it’s considering new measures, such as a cull or a birth control program.
Saint Andrews, a town on the Bay of Fundy near the border with Maine, has a human population of around 1,500 and an estimated 200 deer within town limits.
Resident Bob Charlton says the deer have “eaten everything that they can reach,” including most of his hedges.
Even more concerning is what comes with the deer: ticks that carry Borrelia, the bacterium that causes Lyme disease.
“There are any number of people here in St. Andrews that actually have Lyme disease,” Charlton told CTV Atlantic.
A new study from students at the University of New Brunswick finds there are about 13 deer per square kilometer in the town. The ideal density is believed to be between three and five.
Saint Andrews deputy mayor Brad Henderson told CTV Atlantic that the town’s annual deer hunt isn’t enough to control the population.
“Unfortunately we do need to do something else,” he said.
“The study from the UNB students does recommend a cull followed by an annual nuisance hunt, but we would like to talk about any solution,” he said.
“Maybe it’s feeding with birth control, maybe it’s a neutering program, maybe it’s relocation,” he added. “One thing that’s become very clear is that doing nothing is not a solution.”