Town of Woodstock - bylaw for animal harvesting
November 20, 2021
Dear Mayor Slipp and Councillors,
On November 10, 2021, at 208 Houlton Street a harvested deer was hung from two trees in full public view – directly across from my home with full visibility from my kitchen, living room and bedroom windows, in addition to full view of traffic on this very busy street.
The next day, the deer’s head and skin were removed, and left for public viewing, until the third day when the deer was carved, again in full view of the street and neighbors’ homes.
I contacted the Woodstock Town Office on November 10, 2021, and was directed to the Compliance Officer, who shared there were no bylaws to prohibit this activity. However, it is my understanding, the Compliance Officer did contact the rental residents at 208 Houlton Street by leaving a voicemail message requesting that the deer be removed from public view or covered up. To the best of my knowledge, the message was not returned. The animal was not removed or covered.
Today, Saturday, November 20, 2021, two more deer were hung, while their heads and skin were removed and the carving was completed – again, in full public view.
Hunting is a legal activity within our province and as such I understand there is a process to harvest these animals. However, walking into the living room of my home, which is directly across the road, and seeing this happen, to say that it was very upsetting is an understatement.
This is a family-friendly neighborhood with several young children living near-by that could be upset or traumatized by this activity.
My main concern is the emotional trauma that is caused by this activity in full public view for anyone passing by – especially in today’s climate of high levels of mental illness, stress and anxiety – this is a prime trigger. And my secondary concern, if this activity is allowed to continue, at what point will harvested animals be found hanging at your neighbors’ homes in full visibility from your living rooms? And what would prohibit this activity from occurring on Main Street, and how would that impact both the businesses and residents of that area – or any area within the town limits?
I sincerely hope the Woodstock Town Council will consider drafting and adopting a bylaw that prohibits such occurrences in the future.