Posted in Keep Cape Safe on July 26, 2012
Frequently asked questions
What did the city council finally decide to do?
They passed the ordinance with a 4-3 vote on July 16. It will allow deer hunting in Cape from September 15 through January 15 —– for 4 months each year.
In the haste of a majority to allow hunting in September, the need for a deer count was discounted. Thus, they are promoting urban hunting as a sport, NOT deer management,
The ordinance allows target practice year-round and that has nothing to do with managing deer.
What is wrong with the council’s decision – wasn’t it a fair and open process?
Several council members voted to purposeful delay the final vote until they would have a majority present to pass the ordinance. Without the delay, it would not have passed.
By adding amendments right before the final vote, citizens did not know what the final ordinance would be and were denied a chance to comment on the final version.
Won’t hunting solve Cape’s deer problems?
The city council has approved hunting without knowing what the population density is – so there is no way to measure success of any initiative.
Unlike other cities that have faced this issue, our leaders did not formally survey the citizens to determine an acceptable number of deer.
There are other things that can and should be tried before killing the deer – the no-feed ordinance and deer crossing signs were a start. Exceptions to the fencing ordinance and lower speed limits in areas of greatest concern could also help.
Even just one deer can be a nuisance to some people. And nothing is going to get rid of every deer in Cape Girardeau.
Science has shown a “rebound effect”; decrease a population and the survivors reproduce more quickly.
What is the downside of allowing Bow Hunting in the city?
Discharge of weapons has been banned from the city for decades for a reason – they can hurt and kill people and domestic animals. Recently, a great grandmother in St Louis was shot in the face WHILE INSIDE HER HOUSE by someone target practicing 300 feet away.
It is not humane. Studies have shown that 50% of deer hit by a hunter’s arrow are crippled rather than killed.
Few deer drop immediately; most run – and could very well end up running onto someone else’s property or into the streets.
But doesn’t the ordinance include safety provisions?
Not nearly enough to be safe. For example:
Hunters are not required to pass a skills test –– experience is not necessary.
Hunters are not required to notify city officials when and where they may be hunting. This complicates the city’s ability to enforce the ordinance.
Only in limited situations do property owners have to let their neighbors know there will be hunting.
There is no limit on the number of hunters.
Hunting is not limited to any particular area of the city; every neighborhood is at risk.
Even on the large lots, there is no requirement for hunters to locate toward the center of the property, away from the neighbors.
The distance requirements, some of which can be waived by a property owner, are arbitrary and will be difficult to enforce.
They can hunt from ½ hour before sunrise until ½ hour after sunset.
Under certain circumstances, children of any age can hunt.
Hunters are not required to carry liability insurance.
Unlike Columbia, this is NOT a managed hunt on public land. And unlike Kansas City, Cape’s ordinance ALLOWS hunting on residential property.