Bend, OR. (KTVZ) – As extra folks transfer to Deschutes County, some animal habitats are underneath menace.
Among the many most typical are mule deer, which chief county planner Tanya Saltzman mentioned is “declining at a relatively rapid rate,” NewsChannel 21 just lately reported.
In response to the Oregon Division of Fish and Wildlife, the mule deer inhabitants has decreased by about 40% close to Metulius and about 30% close to Paulina in a three-year testing interval just lately.
In response to Saltzman, the county’s present wildlife space combining space for mule deer has not been up to date since 1992. In collaboration with ODFW, a research final 12 months recognized land makes use of negatively impacting wildlife.
To fight the difficulty of what the ODFW calls “high human use and disturbance,” Saltzman mentioned the ODFW recommends that sure makes use of be banned or restricted to guard wintering deer inhabitants habitats.
Loud noises and bodily obstructions reminiscent of fences are just a few examples that Saltzman mentioned qualify for prime human use and disturbance.
Presently, Saltzman mentioned they’re evaluating zoning codes and updating the general plan to broaden the boundaries of the mule deer habitat.
The replace proposes a 60% improve, bringing the WACZ space to simply over 500,000 acres.
Though mule deer can at all times be noticed exterior of a combing space, Saltzman factors out that this does not essentially imply they’re of their pure deer habitat, the objective is simply to guard that.
“We’re proposing to expand zoning, and then within that, there are rules,” Saltzman mentioned.
There may be nonetheless a lot to be clarified within the drafting, mapping, and modification course of, however Saltzman mentioned there might be guidelines across the duel.
The challenge began a 12 months in the past, and Saltzman mentioned it is supportive, however not with out problem.
“You’re constantly trying to strike a balance, so you’re striking a balance in preserving these species,” Saltzman mentioned. “And those species are often the reason people move here. It’s part of the habitat, it’s part of the beauty of the area. But there’s also recognition of property rights. You know.” , zoning code permits folks to do sure issues with their traits, and there are expectations that folks have.”
A pilot challenge outlining a proposed revised division of the mule deer winter area might be offered to county commissioners in July. There may also be public data classes that Saltzman encourages folks to attend in the course of the summer time. Extra data is on the market right here: