To the editor:
This is in response to Monday's letter in Monday's Craig Daily Press in which the writer said that deer were here in town first. They weren't.
We have talked with some old-timers who used to track a deer in these parts for two or three days or more because they were so scarce, and they needed the meat for their families.
There was a period of time when there were many deer in the country but none in the city.
We've also talked with some not-so-old-timers who said they can remember when the high school was all a-buzz because someone had spotted a deer right in town. Unheard of.
Of course, if you go back far enough, to when Craig was first settled, the deer would have migrated through here. And if you want to go back that far, the logical conclusion would be to take our houses down and let the deer go back to their old ways. We all could move to Steamboat.
The reason the deer are here in such numbers is, the people who love to watch them, feed them. The deer have been habituated to town and therefore do not migrate. They have their babies here, and every one of them love the lush gardens, fruit and bushes right here in town. Why would any sensible deer ever leave? But the big problem is, they keep multiplying.
Monday's letter-writer also said that those of us who value our gardens and flowers should just build higher fences. That is against the city's code; we can have a fence only three feet high in front of our houses. Of course, that is no barrier to any deer.
We're not the only city with this problem.
Chicago and other big cities kill 500 to 600 deer a year. We have more than 300 deer in our little town, and they should be managed. We have many expert bow hunters here, so it would be no problem for them to safely bring the deer population down to a more reasonable level. The meat could be given to people who need some high-quality protein in their diets. I have some good recipes I could share.
Many towns have used this method of management for years. Our City Council could contact Hot Springs, S.D., 57747, to find out how they do it. It shouldn't be too difficult.