Duck hunters will be not be allowed to hunt near the shoreline of following a decision by Public Safety Director David Hiller, who announced a ban on hunters in the waters off of city parks Monday to city council.
The decision comes in response to complaints filed by residents and park users who were disturbed and frightened by the sound of gunshots so close to home.
The problem was especially bad in the cove near Grand Marais and along the boardwalk at at the foot of 3 Mile Road.
The complaints had come in "more than ever than in past years," Hiller told the council referring to duck hunting off of Patterson and Windmill Pointe parks.
Residents along parts of Lakeshore in other Pointes have had similar concerns over the years.
After the Park received complaints last year, Hiller checked it out for himself and said hunters were shooting within five to seven feet of the boardwalk.
"It's scary with people walking in the park, kids…" he said.
The state says hunters cannot fire their weapons within 450 feet of a residence, Hiller said, but there was nothing about parks. He said the hunters he met were licensed and understanding about the concerns but felt they were within their rights to use the lake as they wish.
As it turns out the city is permitted to limit activities within a half-mile of the shore. In addition, a city ordinance forbids firing a firearm, he said.
"Last year was the worst I've ever seen with the number of guys hunting and the number of people complaining," he said.
Signs and notices about the ban will go out within a week, he said.
CORRECTION: This story was corrected Sunday Oct. 30, 2011, at 12:50 a.m. to reflect the accurate decision-maker behind the duck hunting ban in Grosse Pointe Park, who is the Public Safety Director David Hiller.