The boardwalk at Point Pelee National Park, May 28, 2017. (Photo by Maureen Revait)

Point Pelee Closed Temporarily For Deer Cull

Parks Canada says Point Pelee National Park will be closed to the general public for two weeks so park staff and Caldwell First Nation can conduct a deer population reduction program.

The cull is part of Parks Canada’s long-term efforts to improve the park’s ecosystems.

Rae Kingdon with Parks Canada says the cull is necessary due to a large number of white-tailed deer, which can disrupt the park’s savannah and forest ecosystems. Deer are also browsing in the Lake Erie Sandspit Savannah, which accounts for supporting one-quarter of Point Pelee’s at-risk species.

A deer census taken at Point Pelee before Christmas shows the park had 103 deer, up from 84 in 2016. According to historical data and previous research, roughly 30 deer can be supported by a healthy balanced ecosystem. Parks Canada attributes the higher deer population to a mild winter last year as well as a lack of natural predators such as bears and wolves.

The park is expected to reopen on January 27.

For additional information on the deer cull or park closings, visit the park’s official website or call (519) 322-2365.