Feeding Deer, Elk or Moose

Draper City Council members will be considering an ordinance to ban feeding wild deer, elk or moose on private property. This item is scheduled on the July 10, 2018 City Council meeting.

Banned food would include any fruit, grain, mineral, salt, vegetable, or other material placed outdoors for consumption by deer, elk or moose. Naturally growing plants, garden residue maintained as a mulch pile, and bird feeders would not be prohibited under this ordinance.

Deer, elk and moose are able to survive winters without our help. In the fall, these animals graze and store fat to rely on during the winter when they only have a sparse diet. Their metabolism slows as well, letting them go weeks without food.

There are many communities and states throughout the country, who have banned feeding these animals. Feeding deer is illegal in Montana, Illinois, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Virginia.

Why has feeding wildlife been banned in other cities and states?

1) When corn is left out for wildlife, it is very hard for these animals to digest because they have been feeding on lichens, bark and other woody matter. The corn shocks their system and can lead to a lung disease called Acute Acidosis, which in worst cases brings death to an animal within 72 hours.

2) New food sources lure deer, moose and elk into populated areas. If you feed these animals, it invites them to move many miles from where they usually winter. In populated areas, they run more risk of getting hit by a car, dogs chasing them and competition with other deer.

3) Feeding deer, moose and elk causes the animals to congregate together, which dramatically increases the odds that an infected animal may spread Chronic Wasting Disease, Bovine Tuberculosis or Brucellosis. The wild animals catch these diseases by nose-to-nose contact, eating feed contaminated by another animal’s disease-carrying saliva, or inhaling bacteria. Animals flock to feed, when they would normally be miles apart. They are at a higher risk of getting sick from other animals.


Urban Deer Management



The Draper City Council members will also be discussing an Urban Deer Management program at one of its upcoming meetings. Please check on the Draper website where the agendas are posted to watch for this item.

www.draper.ut.us/agenda