The Block Island Times

Suppressors will not be allowed in deer culling

By Stephanie Turaj | Feb 12, 2014

White Buffalo, the sharpshooting company that will be culling Block Island’s deer herd, will not be allowed to use suppressors as part of the deer culling project. A suppressor is a device attached to a firearm that reduces the amount of noise produced by the firearm.

Rhode Island state law prohibits the use of suppression, and the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) had been working with the Rhode Island Attorney General on exempting the deer culling project from that law. However, DEM Assistant Director of Natural Resources Catherine Sparks told The Block Island Times on Wednesday that the deer culling will not be exempt.

Sparks said there has been an "ongoing legal process" to determine whether or not suppressors would be allowed in the deer culling project.

"The DEM wasn't looking to bend the rules," said Sparks in reference to using the silencers. "But as part of our due diligence, the DEM legal team met with the Attorney General and had a very positive discussion with him. But the DEM is not going to be allowed to use suppressors."

In December, the New Shoreham Town Council approved a plan designed to reduce the island’s deer population by about 200, according to the DEM. This plan will include a non-recreational hunt with White Buffalo, a professional sharpshooting company.

"We’re working hard on this project," said Sparks. "Not just the DEM, but the community is working really hard on this. This is the first time for this project and it hasn’t been as seamless as I hoped. But I'm personally really heartened by the efforts of the community."

For more breaking news on the deer culling, see Friday's edition of The Block Island Times.

Comments (2)
Posted by: Thomas Walsh | Feb 12, 2014 18:36

I remain totally opposed to this farce. I cannot believe the town is going to have to pay the legal bills for this disgusting company who should be thrown off the island. Are the residents really be forced to pay when White Buffalo is served with a law suit and I do mean when not if. Someone will stand up to stop this sooner or later as they realize what a sad commentary this is on Block Island.  In addition who thought it was a good idea to pay them $1000 a day if they were held up from their slaughter. Small minds on a small island.

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Posted by: elisa stufano conte | Feb 13, 2014 15:04

I agree with Thomas Walsh, the deer culling slaughter is a tragic farce! Someone is making money on this antiquated, small minded and inhumane travesty, only the innocent deer and the tax payers are paying the heavy the price!  Block Island is going to sound like a third world country at war,  and suppression of sound won't make the sad reality go away! I  have always thought of Block Island as God's Country, but not anymore!! .....very sad!

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