By Shoshanna McCollum
Judge Sandra J. Feuerstein dismissed the lawsuit Friends of Animals filed last year against National Park Service (NPS), Fire Island National Seashore (FINS), and former FINS Superintendent Christopher Soller for their controversial White-tailed Deer Management Plan adopted on Dec. 31, 2015. The Darien, Connecticut-based animal rights advocacy organization claimed that the said plan did not adequately address non-lethal options to control the FINS deer population.
“While (the National Park Service) did not include a discussion of Plaintiff’s proposed ‘nonlethal alternative,’ as stated above, the fact remains that no statute or regulation required it to do so,” wrote Feuerstein in a statement released by the U.S. District Court in Central Islip, on Friday, July 27, according to Newsday.
“Of course we’re disappointed,” said Friends of Animals Assistant Legal Director Jennifer Best in a telephone interview with Fire Island News. “We are still evaluating whether or not we will appeal this decision.”
There is still another pending lawsuit against the deer management plan in which Animal Welfare Institute and Wildlife Preserves, Inc. have filed jointly as co-plaintiffs. Presently FINS has plans to begin culling the deer population at William Floyd Estate in Mastic Beach, as well as Fire Island proper as early as 2019.
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