Hunters fear deer dwindling, predators on the rise in southeastern B.C.

The head of the Trial Wildlife Association says there was little success for hunters hoping to put venison in their freezer this winter.

  • Dec. 14, 2012 4:00 p.m.

Tim Schafer.Trail Daily Times

TRAIL, B.C. — It’s been a lean year for deer hunters in southeastern British Columbia.

With the region’s hunting season now mostly in the bag, the head of the Trial Wildlife Association says there was little success for hunters hoping to put venison in their freezer this winter.

Terry Hanik says hunters across the southeast, from Castlegar and Nelson to Trail, Creston and Grand Forks, noticed a sparse population of deer — both white tail and mule.

He says the low deer count is concerning and hunters are wondering how to re-establish the natural balance.

Hunters have noticed a high number of predators including wolves, coyotes, cougars and even black bears.

Hanik suggests the remedy could be to get rid of some of the fiercest beasts, but although local wildlife associations have been lobbying for the province to formulated some controls a plan has not yet been implemented.

“You talk to different hunters and they aren’t happy. The odd hunter is getting their game,” he said. “We need a management plan to see what we can do with the deer, and why their numbers are down.”

The B.C. government released a draft plan in November for managing the grey wolf population, including the continuation of wolf hunting and the culling of animals in some areas.

“We have no other way if we want to save our deer, but also moose and elk,” said Hanik. “We are in bad shape all over. There has to be a remedy (soon) or else we are in dire straits.”

The province has found wolf numbers are stable, increasing by about 400 over the last 20 years to 8,500. But the plan also noted that in some parts of the southern Interior wolves are killing livestock and endangered mountain caribou.

In contrast, Hanik said he counted fewer than 100 deer in an area south of Trail between March and October.

“At one time you used to be able to see 600 to 700 deer down in the area. Now you are lucky if you can count 75 to 100 down there,” he said.

Just Posted

The shootout at the Bechtel Ferry: 1945

On August 24, 1945, Charles Bechtel, age 66, was killed by the BC Provincial Police just south of the ranch.

A Bright Idea: Studio Arts students’ exhibition

Mount Baker Secondary School Visual Arts students’ hosted their end of semester art show Jan. 17

Hospice seeks clients for Live & Learn Program

After a successful two-year trial period, the Cranbrook and Kimberley Hospice Society is renewing its Live and Learn day program, and is putting out the word to prospective clients.

Cranbrook, Kimberley mayors discuss local issues at business event

Mayor Lee Pratt and Mayor Don McCormick sound off on economic development, housing, and wildfires

Shades of Green Ladies Bonspiel to make you believe

The annual event is looking for teams to compete in the “it’s only make believe,” themed bonspiel.

VIDEO: Students in MAGA hats mock Native American at Indigenous Peoples March

Diocese in Kentucky says it is investigating the matter, caught on video by onlookers

Five steps for examining our lives

Rev. Yme Woensdregt The last few weeks, I’ve written some columns about… Continue reading

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

Most Read