Manitoba Conservation is investigating why two deer carcasses — including one that was decapitated — were recently found in a Winnipeg park.
Kara Riddell said she and her dog, Jasper, discovered the headless deer carcass in the middle of the parking lot at Fraser Meadow Park, in the city's Charleswood neighbourhood, on Monday.
"There's a lot of waste here. Obviously they've just taken the head, so it's trophy hunting. And not a good thing," she said late Monday, as she stood near the carcass at the park.
Riddell said Jasper found another carcass near the entrance four days ago.
"She started inspecting a garbage bag over here, and a deer leg popped out when she touched it," Riddell said.
"It would be nice to know who's doing this and dumping them in a park like this."
The City of Winnipeg says even within the Perimeter Highway, deer are the responsibility of Manitoba Conservation. But for safety reasons, the city said it would pick up the deer carcass in this case.
Canine team to search area
Jack Harrigan, Manitoba Conservation's manager of compliance and field services, says it's too early to tell how the deer carcasses ended up at the park.
"It could've been shot, hunted there, or it could've just been abandoned or left by someone who'd taken it legally and decided they didn't want all of it," he told CBC News on Tuesday.
"All of those things are really against the law."
Harrigan said a canine unit will be searching the area.
Fines for wasting an animal can run from $500 to $10,000, but Harrigan acknowledged that hunters can earn just as much money from trophies.
"It's fairly common because a trophy rack … for white-tail [deer] can run upwards of $10,000. We're talking big money," he said.
Riddell said she hopes whoever is dumping the carcasses in the park is caught and fined.
"Someone out there is hunting animals, possibly within the Perimeter," she said.
"That is not safe for anybody. I mean, there's tons of people out here walking their pets and their dogs, and lots of people on the Harte Trail."