Potential Hunting Grounds Near School, Homes - Councilman Opposes Law
59 parcels eligible under proposed law
A new option to cull deer in Avon Lake is under scrutiny by Avon Lake Councilman David Kos who said at least 59 parcels at 17 locations in Avon Lake would be eligible for bow hunting deer. He provided Patch with an unofficial map of parcels that could be eligible for bow hunting.
Kos' map is broken into wards, with Ward 4, Kos's ward, hosting most of those parcels.
Those parcels include three parcels — that could be open to bow hunting by licensed hunters with the property owners permission if the law is approved—that are across the street from Avon Lake High School.
A joint Safety Committee and Environmental Committee meeting at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall will allow for comments from the public on the bow hunting issue, as well as a proposed ordinance on a deer feeding ban. Both ordinances, recommended by the Environmental Affairs Advisory Board (EAAB) would still need to meet with council approval before either went into effect.
“I am opposed to this,” Kos said. “The proximity of some of these eligible properties are close to neighborhoods. Three are directly across the street from the high school. Some abut cul-de-sacs.”
Kos said that when residents look at the map and see where the properties are, “it will raise eyebrows.”
“All (if the parcels) can be a hunting ground,” he said. “I wouldn’t go to sleep very comfortable knowing adjacent woods can have hunting.”
In addition to a requiring the parcel owner's permission and sufficient acreage or a minimal 5 acres, bow hunting would need to be conducted from a tree stand. Kos said most of the acres that meet those requirements are located at Ford, PolyOne and the BF Goodrich plants and he didn't expect hunting there.
“I can’t see that in any way shape or form they will allow hunting,” he said.
Kos added this was an “east of (SR) 83 issue trying to be decided west of 83.”
He said a better option would be to address the issue of deer accidents and create “deer zones” similar to school zones where solar-powered flashing lights and a lower speed limit during dusk and dawn—when deer are more active—could significantly reduce accidents.
He understood that some residents wanted culling to prevent property destruction, including deer feeding on decorative plants and trees.
“Eating flower beds is not a legitimate reason to kill deer,” he said. “The collisions with cars is. (Last year’s) 35 accidents is high. There is nothing in the EAAB report that addresses the traffic issue.”
He also expressed concern over the likelihood a deer would not be killed on the first shot and a hunter would have to track the injured deer off the permitted property.
Supporters of the culling program feel an immediate need to reduce what has been described as a serious deer overpopulation in the city.