DALTON GARDENS - The city of Dalton Gardens wants to know what its residents think about deer.
A survey was sent out last week to all 832 households, and included questions like, "Have you noticed an increase in the number of deer in Dalton Gardens in the last three years?"
Or, "Have you or anyone you know had a deer-vehicle collision in Dalton Gardens?"
In a letter that accompanied the survey, Mayor Dan Franklin said, "While this survey is voluntary, your input is valuable to our decision-making process and we encourage you to return it to City Hall."
The survey asks if residents believe deer are causing damage to crops, gardens and landscaping; if they are spreading noxious weeds and diseases to humans and livestock; and if they are attracting predators.
It also asks if deer add something positive to the community, such as being enjoyable to watch; are an important part of the wildlife community; and if they are "being forced from Canfield Mountain and other areas and now are our responsibility to care for them."
The city also asks if residents are feeding them.
Franklin said results from the survey will be used in conjunction with data collected by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game about deer populations to help guide future decisions relating to the animal in the city.
The deer population is a long-standing issue in Dalton Gardens. The homes, which typically sit on one-acre parcels, have ample gardens, trees and lawns.
Earlier this year a poacher or poachers shot and killed eight deer in the city, including three does carrying fawns.
Households divided on the issue can request additional surveys.
"We value your privacy, and with that in mind your name or address will not be on the survey," Franklin said. "Your privacy will be protected to the maximum extent allowable by law."