Provo Landscape

Frequently Asked Questions about Provo's Urban Deer

How many deer were killed on the streets of Provo and cleaned up by the Provo City Road Department this past year - (from Oct to Oct)?

The deer calls map has not been yet been updated to include 2016, but as  you can see from some of the attachments in the last email, about 150 deer were killed/injured in traffic 2013-2015 (a few were impaled on or caught in fences, etc.).  I have asked Officer Swenson about the cost in officer hours.  He told me that if enough officers are available, two go out on a deer KIT (killed in traffic) call. The carcass has to be lifted into a truck and taken to the transfer station in Springville, then the truck needs to be washed at the animal shelter (bodily fluids from the deer carcass are not good for any dogs or other animals that may need to ride in the truck later in the day), and a report of the call entered into the Spillman database.  So one call generally takes about an hour (2-employee hours if two officers are dispatched). If a driver wants a police report of the accident, a patrol officer will also be called out.  We did not do an analysis of the cost to the police department, because we were looking more at direct costs to residents. See the minutes from the June 2, 2015 Council Meeting, attached, pages 4-7. However, in response to your question, based on figures publicly available, I have estimated that the wages would be $11-15/hr. per officer; round trip to the shelter is about 20 miles (IRS mileage rate is around $0.54/mile—I don’t know whether that covers the police truck costs exactly) so it is costing around $5,000/yr.  Officer Swenson handled 8 deer by himself yesterday at an estimated cost of $208. Again, this is a rough estimate.

What was the cost in man hours to the city for that service?

My understanding is that this is not a record the City currently keeps; the response in 1, above, is relevant. Likely 150-300 employee hours per year.

How much money has been allocated for this removal project as passed by the city council this summer?

The Council appropriated up to $35,000 for the first year of the urban deer control plan: up to $21,00 for the harvesting and up to $14,00 for the translocation.

What specific action has been taken since the Council approved this project?

The contract with Humphries Archery for lethal removal, and the agreement with the Division of Wildlife Resources for translocation have been executed; we’re waiting for the DWR’s signature on the translocation plan. Harvesting  has begun.

What is the name of the company that is providing the "archers”?

Humphries Archery is providing the deer specialists for harvesting animals and donating them to families who need the meat

How many deer have been relocated or killed since this project went into effect?

Three deer have been harvested, and the meat donated. No deer have been relocated at this time.  The translocation plan cannot be implemented until after the first snowfall, and upon direction from the DWR.  Animal control officers and others interested in capture and relocation of deer will be meeting with the DWR in the near future to discuss in more detail implementation of the relocation plan.

What has been done to advise residents that archers may be on their property?

More than a hundred citizens contacted me about deer in the City.  A significant number of them volunteered to have their property used for harvesting deer.  I forwarded that list of volunteers and a separate list of residents who do not want any deer removal specialist on their property to Humphries Archery.  Humphries is contacting some of those residents who volunteered their properties for harvesting and is making arrangements with those residents individually to enter their property for deer removal. A separate list of property owners who want to cooperate with the translocation option will have to be generated for the nonlethal removal.

What time of day or night canI expect activity?

No deer removal is scheduled for night time. Activity will only occur in daylight hours.

What provision has been made for fawns?

There is an effort not to take a doe with dependent fawns.

What is the timeline for this program to be in existence?

The Certificate of Registration is for three years. See attached COR . It is my understanding that the City will evaluate the program after the first year, so I would expect that the Council and Mayor will want a report in April or May 2017 about the first year’s removal costs and effectiveness, and citizen input about implementation.  I will also refer this question to the Municipal Council’s Office and to the Mayor’s Office, in case I am way off in estimating the timeline they have in mind. It is anticipated, however, that some form of urban deer control will be needed on an ongoing basis, if for no other reason than to prevent the deer from over-populating the City and starving, or suffering in increasing numbers an inhumane death by vehicles on our roadways.

What is the total cost of the program so far - including its initial study?

It is my understanding that the initial survey of the number and locations of the deer was performed by Humphries Archery for $2500 (if cameras were damaged/stolen, there may have been some incidental reimbursements, but I’m not aware of any).  It is my understanding that the base charge for the lethal removal of $10,000 has been paid, and the City has been invoiced $175.56 for camera rental and bait so far. Translocation of deer will cost a minimum of $200 per deer to be paid to DWR.  The City will need to pay for bait, provide at least two employees or volunteers, and may need to provide transportation to the as yet undisclosed areas for relocation. The testimony before the Council about costs indicated that there are many variables for translocation costs, including weather, availability of traps, volunteers, and sites for relocation.  So some of the costs will not be known until later.