Montreal will harvest nearly 150 white-tailed deer


According to Longueuil, the city of Montreal will reduce the white-tailed deer population in the east of the island by shooting between 138 and 147 animals next fall.

A technical and scientific committee made those recommendations to the city, which announced Tuesday that it would move forward with that plan in a few months.

According to the latest count carried out by the Ministry of Environment last month, there were 140 deer in Pointe-aux-Prairies Park and 25 deer in Bois d'Anjou.

However, to maintain a population density of 5 to 7 deer per square kilometer, 117 to 125 deer must be killed in Pointe-aux-Prairies to retain just 15 to 23, and 21 to 22 in Anjou to retain some. 3 to 4.

The current density is 45 animals per square kilometer. The overpopulation of deer is damaging biodiversity and leading to the disappearance of several plants, while invasive species are proliferating, noted Laurence Lavigne-Lalonde, director of large parks on the executive committee of the city of Montreal, at a news conference.

“Since 2021, the deer population has increased by 253%,” she emphasized. When we began the process in 2021 there were 65 deer, but now their numbers have increased exponentially and we are committed to action. »



The head of the Grands Parcs also stressed that collisions between cars and deer are becoming increasingly common in the east of the island, raising safety concerns: in 2022 and 2023 there were 86 accidents, according to the Société de l'Île-de-France of this type given 'Assurance Automobile du Québec (SAAQ).

The city therefore launched a tender to entrust the task of removing excess deer to a company specializing in this type of urban hunting, it announced. The operation is scheduled to take place next fall.

Are Montreal elected officials wary of demonstrations by certain animal rights activists given the legal challenge Longueuil faced and the threats that forced Mayor Catherine Fournier to be placed under police protection?

“We know this is a very sensitive and emotional issue, but with the data we have and the scientific opinions we believe we are making the best decision under the circumstances,” M repliedMe Lavigne Lalonde.

Longueuil changes his attitude

In addition, the city of Longueuil used Montreal's announcement to announce that it would change its method of killing surplus white-tailed deer in Michel Chartrand Park: instead of crossbows, hunters hired by the city would use air rifles.

Longueuil announced last December that it would begin slaughtering around a hundred animals next fall after winning its case against its opponents following an appeals court decision.