Hunter Gets Town Talking
A resident of Needham, Massachusetts became concerned after her teenage daughter came home from walking their dog, saying she ran into a hunter in a tree stand. The location is very close to the residential Ridge Hill Reservation, where the girl and her family live. The girl said the hunter was wearing camo, in a tree stand. She was unsure whether he was armed or not, but told her that he was hunting deer for a state study on Lyme disease.
No one in Needham knows of this study, or if it is legit. But the fact that there was a hunter in this area also led to bringing out maps to see who owns the land, and whether hunting is even allowed in the area. The tree stand where the man was seen was removed but the hunter was not found. Some say the land may be owned by the Army Corps of Engineers, if this is the case hunting is allowed. Others are adamant that the land is conservation land owned by the town, and hunting is prohibited.
The uncertainty surrounding the area, where town, federal and private property intersect, was unsettling to residents like Clara Germani, mother of the girl who ran into the hunter.
Needham does not allow firearms for hunting in the town district, but bow hunting is fine. Residents would prefer hunting to happen far off in the wooded forests, but Massachusetts doesn't have much remote wooded areas left. The deer do not have natural predators, so to keep the numbers down some towns nearby strongly support bow hunting in town. Hunters are supposed to know the rules for the areas they are hunting, but it is hard to see boundary lines that are almost indecipherable on maps. From BostonGlobe.com.