Longueuil police are investigating after Mayor Sylvie Parent received threats about the city’s decision to slaughter about 15 white-tailed deer living in Michel-Chartrand Park.
Police spokesperson Mélanie Mercille said Thursday the threat was deemed sufficiently serious for police to launch an investigation.
Mercille was unable to specify the nature of the threats, but she said that police protection will be provided to Parent if necessary.
The City of Longueuil has decided to euthanize the white-tailed deer due to overpopulation in Michel-Chartrand Park. Parent promised that the meat would be distributed to food banks.
Municipal officials say the overpopulation threatens the future of the park. They argue action is needed to deal with the overpopulation, to preserve the biodiversity of the park, and to maintain a healthy deer population.
There is also an increased risk of traffic accidents near the park and a heightened risk of Lyme disease transmission, according to authorities.
The City of Longueuil says it has tried to find other solutions with the help of Quebec’s Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks. There are significant drawbacks to relocating deer, such as transferring the problem to another region and increasing the risk of disease by adding animals from another environment, officials say.
Authorities say moving the deer would put added stress on them during capture and transport, which can lead to their death.