British Columbia

Deer droppings lead to artistic protest in Penticton

An anonymous artist of sorts in Penticton, B.C., has found a unique way to show displeasure with the city's urban deer problem.

'We have some artistic people in Penticton, that's for sure,' mayor says

Someone in Penticton, B.C., made and dropped off this deer scat sculpture on the steps of city hall. The Okanagan city has been overrun by urban deer, and approved a $15,000-project to relocate the deer, rather than instituting a cheaper cull. (City of Penticton)

An anonymous artist of sorts in Penticton, B.C., has found a unique way to show displeasure with the city's urban deer problem.

Late last month, someone dropped off a statue of a deer on city hall steps decorated with deer scat. The half metre-high statue is mounted on a wooden pedestal.

Penticton Mayor Garry Litke said the work of art definitely made a statement.

"That was a very effective way of communicating with us that there was a problem out there that needed to be resolved," he said. "We have some artistic people in Penticton, that's for sure."

The city already knew there was a problem with urban deer, of course, but it had been awaiting the outcome of the legal battle over deer in a community near the Alberta border.

Anti-cull group ordered to pay Invermere's costs

In Invermere, a group fighting the decision to cull problem deer lost its case in B.C. Supreme Court, and has now been ordered to pay the district's court costs.

For District of Invermere Mayor Gerry Taft, the decision means his local government can recoup some of the $20,000 it calculates it has spent fighting the The Invermere Deer Protection Society in court.

"It's a full vindication of the process that we have followed, through the process of having the petition dismissed and now having costs awarded, what the district has been saying the entire time around this being a frivolous lawsuit wasting time and money," Taft said.

The Deer Protection Society already posted a $12,000 security with the court, which spokesman Devin Kazakoff says is money mainly from volunteers.

Penticton deer to be relocated

Invermere was the third community in B.C. to cull urban deer, but Penticton won't be joining its ranks.

Instead, Penticton City Council voted this week to relocate animals, and to allocated $15,000 towards the program.

The city will now put out a request for proposals from contractors to move the deer to Penticton Indian Band land more than 10 kilometres away.

Johnathan Kruger, chief of the band, said his community will welcome the animals.

"We just thought this would be a good story, to show people that we can work together and take care of our interests," he said. "We definitely wouldn't mind having deer on our reserve and getting some of those aggressive deer out of the community of Penticton."  

With files from the CBC's Brady Strachan and Bob Keating