Residents concerned about Traditional Native deer hunt

It’s an exclusive First Nations traditional harvest of white tailed deer but it’s in Short Hills Provincial Park in the Niagara Region.“We have the cultural and traditional right to harvest the deer we use them for feeding our families,” says Brian Skye of the Haudenosaunee Wildlife and Habitat Authority. Some residents who neighbour the park say the hunt has been a traumatic experience.“I have concerns of deer being wounded and chased on to private properties and having an active hunt in someone’s backyard and that’s what happened last Saturday morning, my worst fears came true right here in my own backyard,” says Robin Zavitz. The Zavitz family says a hunter injured a deer and followed it here behind their backyard. They called the Ministry of Natural Resources and a game warden had to shoot the injured deer dead right in front of the family. What also frightens the family is there are some entrances to the park that do not warn the public of an active hunt taking place.“You see people pulled over parked on the road and walking in so there’s no way the ministry can say they can secure this park, it’s impossible,” says Taylor Staneff.Craig Zavitz says the provincial Liberals have ignored their concerns.“How a government can completely ignore a request from the entire regional council of Niagara which was unanimously approved to stop this hunt, I would expect yes, no or maybe, but to be completely ignored for a full month now, outrageous.”The Haudenosaunee Wildlife and Habitat Authority says a hunter did follow the wounded deer to the property line of the Zavitz family’s home but says he did not trespass. He argues being on the park land is a native given right.“You can’t really tie it in to a specific treaty we have always had this obligation this relationship with nature.” 00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09