Over 160 deer were taken during a controversial deer cull held recently at Oak Openings Preserve Metropark in Swanton Township.
Over a three night period 165 deer were killed by sharpshooters at Oak Openings Preserve, according to information provided by Scott Carpenter, director of public relations for the Metroparks. Another 30 were taken at Wildwood Preserve over one night. Of the 195 total deer harvested, 145 were does and 50 were bucks.
Metroparks of the Toledo Area had a permit from the Ohio Division of Wildlife to take up to 200 deer total from Oak Openings Preserve and Wildwood Preserve. The work was done with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Following the cull, 6,740 pounds of meat were donated. There were 194 deer processed with one deer being unsuitable for processing.
The total processing cost was $17,880, which was partially offset by an $11,640 donation from Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry. The net processing cost to the Metroparks was $6,240.
The meat was donated to three charities serving Greater Toledo – Helping Hands of St. Louis, Toledo Gospel Rescue Mission, and Cherry Street Mission. Commercial processors used with Takacs Grocery and Meats of Toledo, Walter & Sons of Wapokoneta, Ohio, and Rodabaugh Bros. Meats in Pandora, Ohio.
Some area residents protested the cull and made their feelings known to Metroparks officials at a January town hall meeting in the Swanton Township Hall.