Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wisconsin Whitetail Outfitters

I have come across a few people who are looking for Wisconsin whitetail outfitters. So I decided to compile a listing for those looking. I will continue to add to this list and will add upon request from outfitters.

Buffalo County Buck Connection
S1226 State Road 88
Mondovi, WI 54755
Phone: 715-946-3211

Buffalo County Outfitters
Scott Kirkpatrick
26214 W. 3rd Ave
Eleva, WI 54738
Phone: 715-533-0943

Superior Outfitters
Mike Noskoviak61108 Wiberg RoadAshland, WI 54806
Phone: 715-278-3238

Wolf River Whitetails
841 Sandhill RdAshville, NC 28806Site:
Phone: 423-307-2896

High Country Reserve- Osseo
17252 US Hwy 10Osseo, WI 54758
Phone: 1-888-734-1382

Buck Hollow Ranch
W7115 Hwy 95
Neillsville, WI 54456
Phone: (715)743-6406 (Bill)

Buffalo County Whitetails
Steve SegerstromS 561 Highway 37
Mondovi, WI 54755
Phone: 715-926-5341

Beaver Creek Outfitting Outfitter:
Robb Kaminskis
3806 Marion Ave
Racine, WI 53403
Phone: 262-633-8575

Wisconsin Northland OutdoorsOutfitter:
Art Malin, John Myhre and Tim Duffy
7595W Pine Point Rd
Hayward, WI 54843Site:
Phone: 715-462-9402

Dave Fredrickson Outfitting, LLC
Dave and Teresa Fredrickson
1194 South Cooke Valley Road
Independence, WI 54747
Phone: 715-946-3477

High Tines Outfitters
S2041 Dorns Road
Arcadia, WI 547612
Phone: 608-289-5507

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Creating a Food Plot Start to Finish: Prepping Your Plot

Creating a Food Plot Start to Finish: Prepping Your Plot

...continued from two previous posts.

You know have sampled your soil, got the soil results back and have the nutrients ready to be applied to your soil. Now what?

Here is the fun part....depending on the size of your plot, you can do this with an ATV and some equipment that can be rented. If you have a larger plot, you will need most likely need a tractor, again you can rent most of this equipment so don't break the bank on a new John Deer, at least not until you realize this is something you plan to do a lot of. I am a frugal person so this is a minor soapbox.

Start by marking your boundaries, either with lathe sticks or posts. This is simply to stay organized and to make sure you measure again and cover your plot with enough nutrients and plot mixture.

If using an ATV or tractor the next tool you will want to use is a cultivator. You can often rent a cultivator at an equipment rental store or even your local implement dealer. I have found it to be very easy to start from the outside boundary and work your way in. This makes it easier to stay within your set boundaries. Another tip I have is, if you have the ability to lower or raise the discs, start the plot by breaking about 3 - 6 inches first to see how many rocks are at the surface. This will allow for you to save the cultivator a few chips and saves you from a little whiplash. Again, if you are using a tractor most of these issues are alleviated so plow away.

Once you have cultivated the area in depth of about 4 - 6 inches, you will want to take another pass over the top of the soil by raising the cultivator. This will take what has been dug up and loosen the soil for easy dragging.

If you haven't guessed, now is the time for dragging the plot. This create a smooth plot and even planting. Most cultivators will come with a drag, if they don't, again you can rent one of these.

Your plot should now be ready for nutrients...give your nutrient time to soak in so you are going to have to water and soak your nutrients or wait for rain. April and May is a great time to lay nutrients, it will give you June and July to lay your seed.

You are very close, next post I will talk about different seeding and crop options.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

DNR Official Resoponse to Earn-A-Buck

After all the talk, all the meetings, and all the voting, the DNR has released its official reponse to all the noise surrounding the earn-a-buck rule.

Below is the official release which can be found on the Wisconsin DNR website.

DNR Indefinitely Suspends Earn-a-Buck: Will work with hunters, farmers, foresters to develop alternative

News Release Published: April 23, 2009 by the Central Office
Contact(s): Adam Collins (608) 358-3629

MADISON – The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board (the Board) today adopted the Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) recommended fall season structure for the 2009 deer hunt, which includes no Earn-a-Buck units outside of the CWD management zone and 40 fewer deer management units with the October antlerless hunt. Overall, the number of units set to have a regular deer season has increased by 180 percent from 2008. Earn-a-Buck will continue within the CWD management zone during the 2009 season.

The Board also passed a resolution indefinitely suspending Earn-a-Buck and directing the DNR to begin a new process to develop effective, hunter supported alternatives to the program. Units within the CWD zone, where disease management efforts are ongoing, will continue to have Earn-a-Buck until those herds are at goal or effective alternative management strategies are developed. The Board also reaffirmed the importance of achieving a good balance to support Wisconsin’s strong deer hunting tradition and a quality hunt while maintaining a healthy, sustainable deer herd and protecting agriculture, forestry and ecosystems.

DNR Secretary Matt Frank issued the following statement about the action of the Natural Resources Board:

“DNR and the Natural Resources Board hear hunter concerns regarding the 2008 fall deer hunt, DNR deer population estimates, state deer population goals, and Earn-a-Buck regulations. We are not only listening, we are taking action by indefinitely suspending Earn-a-Buck. Concerns have been raised in extensive hearings conducted by the DNR and the legislature throughout the state, as well as by the Conservation Congress and numerous conservation organizations. While we should not underestimate the challenge we face in developing effective alternatives to Earn-a-Buck that will control the deer population where it is over goal, the DNR is strongly committed to working with hunters, landowners and the public to do just that.”

“Beyond finding an alternative to Earn-A-Buck, we will be taking important additional action over the next year. We will review and revise the state’s deer population goals covering the next three years. Strong public input will be critical to that process. We will also review and make necessary improvements to our system for estimating the deer population, including how we measure the impact of winter severity, natural predators, and other factors.”

“We look forward to working with the Natural Resources Board, the Legislature, the Conservation Congress, hunters, landowners, conservation organizations on these important issues.”

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Earn-A-Buck Gone for Good?

The very unpopular program called "earn-a-buck" has gone one step further toward being eliminated completely.

On Wednesday wildlife officials in Wisconsin decided to indefinitely suspended the state's earn-a-buck program outside chronic wasting disease areas.

According to the Northland Newscenter "The Natural Resources Board initially approved a one-year moratorium Wednesday, but then board member Jane Wiley introduced a resolution to go further.

She says hunters are so upset over the program it would be onlya matter of time until state lawmakers stepped in and began managing deer hunting with legislation.

She says the board needs to send the Legislature a strong message that it is serious about halting the program."

Monday, April 20, 2009

Alternatives to the Earn-A-Buck Rule?

Alternatives to the Earn-A-Buck Rule?
Ben Halverson

I decided to do more than just voice my opinion and get other hunters from other states opinions on what they feel about having the earn-a-buck rule be a part of their whitetail hunting season. I posted some questions on hunting forums and other blogs, with the hopes of getting some great feedback. I was pleasantly surprised to see so much discussion, constructive no less, about their feelings with the earn-a-buck rule.

I share with you below the comments and discussions I have become a part of.

My question to other hunters:

I recently attended the Spring DNR Hearings here in Wisconsin and was against a controversial rule called earn-a-buck, basically the rule that says in a designated earn-a-buck zone, you must shoot an "anterless" deer before you can harvest a buck.

I wanted to know if there are any other states that do this, and if not, what does your state use for herd control methods. If so, what are your thoughts to earn-a-buck hunting? I plan to place your thoughts on my blog, again at and let you have the credit if you want me to use your name otherwise it will be "anonymous."
Please help, what are some other methods used by your county or state for herd control methods of whitetail deer?


Posted: Sunday, April 19, 2009 8:47 PM

I think everyone will agree with me on this. Earn-A-Buck stinks!!! Who wants to be told what you have to shoot? If someone want to harvest an antlerless deer, then let them. But, don't FORCE someone to shoot an antlerless deer if they don't want to. Let people make their own minds up. The DNR is a crock of crap. They don't give a darn about the Wisconsin hunters and what they want. Now, for the 2009 deer season at least, we're not having Earn-A-Buck. The CWD units are, but the other units are not. Maybe the DNR got it through their pea-sized brains that hunters are fed up with this bologna AND that there is hardly any deer because of this. It's about time the DNR wakes up!!!
If you are going to post this on your blog or whatever your going to do, just call me by my forum name--Duckbuster."A duck call, like a shotgun, is only as good as the man behind it."

-Phil Robertson, Duck Commander

Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 5:51 AM

I don't see a problem with shooting a doe before being able to take a buck, providing for the circumstances. It should be used as a management tool to keep a population in check. From what I've seen here in MI, allowing hunters to decide what they want has caused a decline in bucks and an overabundance in does. To the extent that they held a special week long doe season last year. Now when the population is balance, then let the hunters hunt what they want, but when it's out of balance, then impose the rule. Consider what would happen to the population if all or most of the bucks were taken and all that was left were does. How long would the population be around? May GOD bless your hunting days,

the Thumb MI

Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 11:23 AM

Marks65, trust me, you would not want to have earn a buck. The DNR took deer management to a whole new level with this. Now, there's hardly any deer across the state due to earn a buck for the past 4 or 5 years. I guess you would have to have in order to understand it. it sucks!!"A duck call, like a shotgun, is only as good as the man behind it."

-Phil Robertson, Duck Commander

Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 11:46 AM

And if you hunted here, you would better understand my view point. Until recently, you were only able to get buck tags over the counter, doe permits had to be applied for and not everyone would be approved. So you're sitting in the woods waiting for a buck, any buck to come along and all you're seeing are does. As I stated, it should only be used as a management tool to keep the population in balance and I'm not referring to 1 buck for each doe, but would a normal herd would have. When that becomes unbalanced, then impose the rule to bring the herd back into balance. Everything in moderation.May GOD bless your hunting days,

the Thumb MI

Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 6:11 PM

I don't know, all I know is that this earn a buck got totally out of hand here in WI. No one likes it at all. It imposes on hunters rights. And that's not right at all. The DNR does not run like a democracy should. Yes, you need laws and other rules. But their is a fine line between laws/rules and the DNR CONTROLLING you. I'm not saying the DNR is completely bad, but they do need to clean up their act a little bit over here. They should be here to improve our hunting and fishing heritage, not to hurt and diminish it. "A duck call, like a shotgun, is only as good as the man behind it."

-Phil Robertson, Duck Commander

Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 6:42 PM

The population problem didn't begin until the dnr started handing out more than one tag for a particular season. They should give you one tag for any deer that you wish to shoot, buck or doe. This wouldn't affect the bucks because the hunters that want an older buck will still let the smaller ones go. No more over the counter extra tags for antlerless deer. Is it true the auto insurance companies give the dnr money for every tag they sell so they don't have to pay on insurance claims?

Posted: Monday, April 20, 2009 8:07 PM

I'll agree with that brew. I do think each person should get one doe and one buck tag however. That wouldn't be a big deal. For bow and gun. 2 tags for each season. I don't know much about the auto insurance. But i would be willing to bet that what you said is true. I know that auto insurance companies have a hard time with auto accidents involving deer though. "A duck call, like a shotgun, is only as good as the man behind it."

-Phil Robertson, Duck Commander

Keep the comments coming, this is leading to great discussion....I will continue to post as I get more of your comments.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Wisconsin Hunters Rights Coalition Releases its Postion Statement on EAB

As I mentioned in my post "Legal Help for Hunters: Its about Time," Wisconsin Hunters Rights' Coalition and the Wisconsin Chapters of Safari Club International retained Michael Best & Friedrich law firm to help with eliminiting the Earn-a-Buck or "anterless only" seasons.

Courtesy of Michael Best & Friedrich, below you will find the Wiconsin Hunters Rights Coalitions' Position Statement on why the Wisconsin Legislature should eliminate the Earn-a-Buck and "anterless only" seasons.

Wisconsin Hunters Rights Coalition

The Wisconsin Legislature should permanently eliminate “earn-a-buck” and October “antlerlessonly” deer hunting seasons in Wisconsin because:

1) “Earn-a-buck” and October “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons remain enormously unpopular with Wisconsin’s 650,000 plus deer hunters and threaten Wisconsin’s strong deer hunting traditions and heritage.

2) The Department originally represented that the “earn-a-buck” and October “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons would be “temporary.”

3) Wisconsin’s deer population can be effectively managed through the issuance of appropriate numbers of antlerless and bonus deer permits pursuant to Wisconsin Administrative Code section NR 10.104. The use of antlerless and bonus deer permits represents a reasonable and less restrictive means to achieve appropriate deer management objectives.

4) The Department’s deer population “estimates” are flawed and do not justify mandating the use of “earn-a-buck” and “antlerless-only” hunting seasons.

A. A 2006 audit confirmed that the Department’s population estimates at the “deer management unit” level are unrealistic and inaccurate.

B. The manner in which the Department uses the “sex-age-kill” model for calculating deer population estimates results in an estimate that is only “within +/- 121.9% of the true [deer] population level, 95% of the time.”

C. Contrary to the Department’s estimates, trends in vehicle collision reports, buck harvest data, and hunters’ observations show that the deer population in Wisconsin is declining and not increasing.

5) The “earn-a-buck” and “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons are fundamentally incompatible with the “sex-age-kill” model that the Department is required to use to calculate deer population densities because these hunting seasons alter the buck harvest rate (which is a key variable of the model) thereby biasing population “estimates.”

6) The “earn-a-buck” and “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons have contributed to the
Department significantly overestimating the size of the deer population in Wisconsin.

7) The Department has established “deer population goals” for the “deer management units” described in Wisconsin Administrative Code Section NR 10.104 (4) that are below levels necessary to meet reasonable social, economic, and ecosystem management objectives. The Department’s population goal for the entire state is approximately 739,000 deer, which represents one deer per 47 acres of land. This goal is well below the biological carrying capacity of the land and antithetical to “good hunting.”

8) “Earn-a-buck” and “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons are inconsistent with or otherwise violate Article 1, Section 26 of the Wisconsin Constitution; Chapter 29 of the Wisconsin Statutes; and Chapters NR 1 and 10 of the Administrative Code.

A. The seasons unreasonably infringe upon freedom of choice by hunters by requiring hunters to “kill” a deer that they would not otherwise shoot as a prerequisite to exercising their constitutionally protected right to “hunt.”

B. “Earn-a-buck” and “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons are inconsistent with the Department’s obligation under Chapter 29 of the Wisconsin Statutes to promulgate rules that ensure the citizens of the state continued opportunities for “good hunting.”

C. Chapter 29 of the Wisconsin Statutes expressly condones the use of “hunter’s choice deer hunting permit[s]” and “bonus deer hunting permits” to achieve appropriate deer management objectives.

D. Wisconsin Administrative Code Section NR 10.104 (5) mandates that the Department utilize a “sex-age-kill” model to “annually calculate an estimate of the overwinter deer population for each deer management unit.” Recognizing that a “sex-age-kill” model cannot reasonably be used in “earn-a-buck” deer management units, the Department has employed the use of nauthorized methods of “estimating” the deer population in these units.

9) The “earn-a-buck” and “antlerless-only” deer hunting seasons negatively impact the economic benefits of deer hunting in Wisconsin by reducing hunter participation and generating unnecessary ill-will towards the Department.

10) The unintended long-term consequences of “earn-a buck” and “antlerless-only” deer
hunting seasons are revealed in chronic wasting disease (“CWD”) deer management units. Ironically, the Department itself estimates that the deer population has increased 82% since 2002 in CWD units (the opposite of the Department’s objective), because landowners and hunters have rejected the Department’s management approach.

2009 DNR Spring Rule Hearings - WCC County Meetings Votes are In

Monday nights 2009 DNR Spring Rule Hearings across the state did not disappoint and drew large crowds in several counties. The DNR has posted the votes from Mondays rule hearings and you can find all the results if you click on the DNR link at the bottom of this post.

Sitting in the Eau Claire county section meeting, I realized that there were a lot of dedicated hunters and outdoorsmen(and outdoorswomen) that have a passion for Wisconsin's great outdoors.

Since this is a Wisconsin Whitetail Blog, I will cover what I feel were the main whitetail issues that came up. Below you will see the results from proposed rules # 57 EAB Alternative, #59 Eliminate Earn-A-Buck (EAB) and October Antlerless Deer Hunts, # 63 Private Land-only, Antlerless-only Deer Season, #65 Maximum of Two Consecutive Years for a Deer Management Unit to be designated.

Note: I plan to have more information by the end of the day on the Earn-A-Buck update from Michael Best & Friedrich along with the position statement from the Hunters' Rights Coalition.

QUESTION 57 – An EAB Alternative
The use of the Earn-a-Buck deer season in Wisconsin has been controversial, unpopular, and seemingly unfair to many hunters since its inception. Yet, EAB has proven to be effective at reducing high deer populations. It accomplishes this by tying the ability, opportunity, and desire for harvesting a buck with the biological necessity of harvesting antlerless deer. Sadly, EAB does this on an individual hunter basis where one hunter may be able to hunt bucks for over 100 days, while another hunter may never have even one day’s chance.

Another way of utilizing the same “ability, opportunity, and desire for harvesting a buck” would be to implement a full-length antlerless season with a shortened buck harvest period. Season opening weekends (and perhaps a two or three week rutting period) would always be open for buck harvest so everyone in the DMU has the same chance at that time for a buck every year that the program is in effect. Antlerless harvest would be spurred on during the rest of the season by the desire to return to a full-season buck hunting opportunity again. Specific time periods and trigger points for the implementation of such a management tool could be developed cooperatively with the DNR. All hunters under this system would and should be treated equally.

  • In areas or DMUs of high over-goal deer populations and in an effort to provide equal buck-hunting opportunity to all hunters in those units, would you prefer the concept of shortening buck hunting opportunity by limiting the buck harvest equally for all hunters on a seasonal basis instead of limiting individual opportunity through the use of EAB?
Votes Yes: 1126
Votes No: 5472
Majority: No
Counties Approving: 0
Counties Rejecting: 71
Counties Tie Vote: 0
Counties Not Voting: 1

#59 Eliminate Earn-A-Buck (EAB) and October Antlerless Deer Hunts

Wisconsin’s deer hunting heritage and tradition is protected by a Constitutional right to hunt. Some hunters feel the current EAB and October special antlerless hunts are unreasonable in that they negatively impact hunting traditions and deny hunters the right to hunt bucks.
  • Would you support the DNR eliminating Earn-a-Buck and special October antlerless deer hunts?
Votes Yes: 5513
Votes No: 1321
Majority: Yes
Counties Approving: 72
Counties Rejecting: 0
Counties Tie Vote: 0
Counties Not Voting: 0

QUESTION 63 – Private Land-only, Antlerless-only Deer Season

In an attempt to control high deer populations in some areas of the state, the Wisconsin DNR has held special 4-day antlerless-only deer seasons, usually called T-Zone seasons, in October and/or December for the last several years. Because deer hunters with antlerless tags flow to the areas with the least resistance to access, there is a wide-spread perception in many Deer Management Units that public land in those DMU’s with antlerless hunts are being over-harvested while the privately controlled land holds the actual over-population of deer in that unit.

Creating a private land-only, antlerless-only deer season might better focus antlerless harvest efforts where the actual population problem exists and could help address the concerns of over-harvesting public land.
  • Would you support the concept of some type of private land-only, antlerless-only deer season as a more focused and precise tool for deer population management?
Votes Yes: 2570
Votes No: 3933
Majority: No
Counties Approving: 12
Counties Rejecting: 58
Counties Tie Vote: 2
Counties Not Voting: 0
QUESTION 65 – Maximum of Two Consecutive Years for a Deer Management Unit to be designated as an Earn-a-Buck (EAB) unit
Earn-a-Buck regulations are very unpopular with hunters and may have led to an over harvest of antlerless deer in some areas of the state. To control deer populations in the state there needs to be a partnership between the hunters and the DNR. To build that partnership there needs to be a balance between the use of strict harvest regulations and the desires of the deer hunters.

  • Would you support a rule change that would prohibit EAB seasons from being held for more than two consecutive years within the same unit, and would require a one year break from EAB, before a unit could be re-designated as an EAB unit?
Votes Yes: 5512
Votes No: 1325
Majority: Yes
Counties Approving: 72
Counties Rejecting: 0
Counties Tie Vote: 0
Counties Not Voting: 0
You can find all the results on the Wisconsin DNR website at

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Big Game Harvest Estimates: Whitetail Deer (Gun)

Big Game Harvest Estimates:
White-tailed Deer (Gun)
Wisconsin DNR
Year, Estimated Harvest, Antlerless Deer - In parenthesis (1), Leading Counties

1930 30,000 County totals not available
1931 -- No estimate available
1932, 36,009, Sawyer, Price, Bayfield, Vilas, Ashland
1933 -- Closed season
1934 21,251 Sawyer, Bayfield, Vilas, Oneida, Ashland
1935 -- Closed season
1936 29,676 Vilas, Bayfield, Sawyer, Oneida, Price
1937 14,835 Vilas, Bayfield, Oneida, Sawyer, Price
1938 32,855 Vilas, Bayfield, Sawyer, Oneida, Price
1939 25,730 Vilas, Bayfield, Oneida, Sawyer, Price
1940 33,138 Vilas, Bayfield, Sawyer, Oneida, Price
1941 40,403 Vilas, Bayfield, Sawyer, Oneida, Price
1942 45,188 Vilas, Bayfield, Sawyer, Oneida, Price
19432 128,296 Vilas, Sawyer, Oneida, Bayfield, Price
1944 28,537 Bayfield, Vilas, Oneida, Marinette, Douglas
1945 37,527 Bayfield, Marinette, Vilas, Jackson, Douglas
1946 55,276 Vilas, Juneau, Bayfield, Jackson, Marinette
1947 53,520 Juneau, Bayfield, Marinette, Vilas, Jackson
1948 41,954 Marinette, Jackson, Bayfield, Vilas, Oneida
1949 159,112 Jackson, Vilas, Marinette, Bayfield, Oneida
1950 167,911 Vilas, Marinette, Bayfield, Oneida, Jackson
1951 129,475 Bayfield, Price, Oneida, Douglas, Forest
1952 27,504 Forest, Jackson, Marinette, Lincoln, Douglas
19533 19,823 Vilas, Jackson, Marinette, Price, Oneida
1954 24,698 Vilas, Forest, Marinette, Jackson, Price
1955 35,060 Marinette, Buffalo, Price, Oneida, Dunn
1956 35,562 Jackson, Marinette, Oneida, Vilas, Price
1957 68,138 (25,359) Jackson, Marinette, Oneida, Vilas, Bayfield
1958 95,234 (44,987) Jackson, Oneida, Marinette, Price, Vilas
1959 105,596 (47,696) Oneida, Price, Marinette, Sawyer, Forest
1960 61,005 (25,515) Price, Marinette, Oneida, Vilas, Bayfield
1961 38,772 Jackson, Price, Bayfield, Douglas, Marinette
1962 45,835 Jackson, Oneida, Price, Douglas, Bayfield
1963 65,020 (4,513) Jackson, Bayfield, Clark, Buffalo, Douglas
1964 93,445 (19,557) Jackson, Bayfield, Price, Douglas, Sawyer
1965 98,744 (30,064) Jackson, Oneida, Bayfield, Marinette, Price
1966 110,062 (42,700) Jackson, Waupaca, Bayfield, Marinette, Douglas
1967 128,527 (57,495) Waupaca, Jackson, Marinette, Oneida, Bayfield
1968 119,986 (57,465) Waupaca, Marinette, Jackson, Waushara, Bayfield
1969 98,008 (45,353) Marinette, Waupaca, Jackson, Shawano, Marathon
1970 72,844 (22,536) Buffalo, Jackson, Waupaca, Marinette, Wood
1971 70,835 (21,841) Jackson, Waupaca, Buffalo, Wood, Shawano
1972 74,827 (25,411) Jackson, Waupaca, Adams, Wood, Buffalo
1973 82,105 (24,741) Jackson, Waupaca, Adams, Shawano, Wood
1974 100,405 (33,092) Jackson, Waupaca, Wood, Adams, Marathon
1975 117,378 (44,005) Jackson, Waupaca, Marathon, Wood, Waushara
1976 122,509 (52,999) Jackson, Waupaca, Buffalo, Shawano, Marathon
1977 131,910 (49,148) Jackson, Columbia, Marinette, Buffalo, Waupaca
1978 150,845 (63,448) Jackson, Marinette, Marathon, Waupaca, Wood
1979 125,570 (49,020) Jackson, Waupaca, Buffalo, Marinette, Sauk
1980 139,624 (58,583) Jackson, Waupaca, Sauk, Marinette, Iowa
1981 166,673 (67,639) Jackson, Marinette, Sauk, Waupaca, Marathon
1982 182,715 (85,181) Jackson, Waupaca, Marinette, Sauk, Marquette
1983 197,600 (100,972) Iowa, Sauk, Jackson, Waupaca, Columbia
1984 255,726 (138,923) Sauk, Iowa, Jackson, Columbia, Richland, Marinette
1985 274,302 (161,601) Marinette, Jackson, Waupaca, Oconto, Shawano, Sauk
1986 259,240 (141,354) Jackson, Sauk, Marinette, Waupaca, Shawano
1987 250,530 (133,649) Marinette, Jackson, Waupaca, Marathon, Clark
1988 263,424 (141,888) Marinette, Waupaca, Marathon, Jackson, Clark
1989 310,192 (170,541) Marinette, Marathon, Waupaca, Clark, Oconto
1990 350,040 (209,314) Marinette, Marathon, Clark, Jackson, Waupaca
1991 352,520 (232,511) Marinette, Douglas, Polk, Burnett, Waupaca
1992 288,820 (177,344) Marinette, Jackson, Clark, Marathon, Waupaca
1993 217,584 (101,077) Jackson, Waupaca, Buffalo, Iowa, Sauk
1994 307,629 (172,055) Marinette, Jackson, Marathon, Clark, Sauk
1995 398,002 (226,111) Marinette, Jackson, Marathon, Clark, Sauk
1996 388,791 (250,169) Marinette, Iowa, Jackson, Marathon, Sauk
1997 292,513 (171,463) Sauk, Marathon, Waupaca, Shawano, Buffalo
1998 332,254 (180,679) Marinette, Marathon, Portage, Oneida, Jackson
1999 402,204 (242,948) Marathon, Marinette, Clark, Jackson, Waupaca
2000 528,494 (356,741) Marinette, Marathon, Clark, Bayfield, Jackson
2001 361,264 (219,322) Marinette, Marathon, Bayfield, Clark, Oneida
2002 317,888 (191,432) Marinette, Clark, Marathon, Waupaca, Shawano
2003 388,344 (240,908) Sauk, Marathon, Marinette, Bayfield, Waupaca
2004 413,794 (280,571) Marathon, Waupaca, Clark, Shawano, Bayfield
2005 387,310 (239,688) Marathon, Clark, Waupaca, Shawano, Jackson
2006 393,306 (256,028) Marathon, Clark, Jackson, Waupaca, Polk
2007 402,563 (269,432) Marathon, Clark, Polk, Waupaca, Shawano

(1) Number of quota (antlerless) deer in parenthesis included in estimated harvest; bold numbers include estimates with unknowns.
(2) Split season.
(3) First year of mandatory gun deer registration.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Reminder for 2009 Annual DNR Spring Fish and Wildlife Hearings Tonight

Reminder for 2009 Annual DNR Spring Fish and Wildlife Hearings Tonight

The 2009 Annual DNR Spring Fish and Wildlife Hearings and Conservation Congress County Meetings will take place on Monday, April 13, 2009 at 7 p.m., in each of Wisconsin's 72 counties (hearing notice including rule proposals and hearing locations).

Attendees will have a chance to elect county delegates to represent their views on natural resource issues, record their preference for DNR rule proposals and weigh in on a variety of Natural Resources Board and Conservation Congress advisory questions. There is also an opportunity at the end of the hearing to introduce resolutions pertaining to the management of natural resources in Wisconsin. Last year over 6,400 people attended the hearings.

To view the meeting locations by county see:

Friday, April 10, 2009

DNR Releases Recommended 2009 Whitetail Deer Season Map

Recommended 2009 Whitetail Deer Season Map

The DNR has made viewable the new unit map for the 2009 whitetail deer hunting season.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

WDNR News Release - DNR recommends one year moratorium on Earn-a-Buck program outside Chronic Wasting Disease zones

DNR recommends one year moratorium on Earn-a-Buck program outside Chronic Wasting Disease zones
News Release Published: April 9, 2009 by the Central Office
Contact(s): Tom Hauge, Wildlife Management Director, (608) 266-2193Mark Aquino, Acting Lands Deputy Administrator (608) 267-7472

MADISON – Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Secretary Matt Frank today announced the department will recommend a one-year moratorium on the Earn-a-Buck program outside of the Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) zone for the 2009 deer hunt.

Additionally, DNR is recommending 40 deer management units Recommended 2009 Deer Season Structure that had the October antlerless hunt last year (without Earn-a-Buck) will now have a regular hunting season for 2009.

Complete text of the proposal going to the Natural Resources Board for consideration on April 22 is now available.

“Deer hunting is a rich tradition in Wisconsin, and the DNR takes our role in protecting this important part of our heritage very seriously,” Secretary Frank said. “In light of the recommendation from the Wisconsin Conservation Congress, and the concerns of hunters expressed at annual DMU (deer management unit) meetings across the state and two legislative hearings sponsored by Sen. Holperin and Rep. Hraychuck, the DNR is recommending a one year moratorium on the use of Earn-a-Buck in DMUs outside of the CWD zone for the 2009 hunting season. Retaining Earn-a-Buck within the CWD zone maintains our commitment to controlling the spread of CWD by reducing local deer populations.”

The Conservation Congress Big Game Study Committee reviewed the department’s deer season proposal. The committee recommended a one year moratorium on Earn-a-Buck (except in CWD zones) and that all recommended Earn-a-Buck units be changed to Herd Control (October hunt) units. The Big Game Study Committee was clear that if, during this moratorium, the deer herd increased, Earn-a-Buck would return in 2010.

“We made additional efforts this year to gather hunter and public input,” Secretary Frank said. “We expanded our information collection methods to include over 40 public meetings around the state and more than twice as many people attended herd status meetings this year than last. For the first time, we offered an online survey, which was completed by over 6,000 people.”
Hunter frustration with the fall 2008 hunt was particularly pronounced this year, aggravating fundamental concerns with Earn-a-Buck. These final recommendations reflect feedback received from the Conservation Congress, the DNR’s herd status meetings and the new online survey.

Deer populations were lower than anticipated in fall of 2008. The impacts of the harsh winter weather and the late, cool spring reduced fawn production and deer survival more than anticipated.

“We have taken action in response to avoid the problems encountered last season and improve our science base for decision making,” Secretary Frank said. “One of the steps we have already taken is to establish more stations to measure winter severity and have a more complete picture of winter impact on fawn production and deer survival.”

Deer population goals are established to ensure a healthy deer herd and habitat for the long term, ensuring the preservation of our great hunting traditions for future generations. A deer herd above a healthy population goal stunts forest regeneration and causes significant crop damage.

“Our population goals are also designed to protect the long-term vitality and economic viability of our forests and our agriculture lands,” Secretary Frank said. “By achieving the right balance, we preserve Wisconsin’s great deer hunting tradition for generations to come, and maintain hunting, forestry and agriculture as key components of Wisconsin’s economy.”

During the moratorium, the DNR proposes to work with the Congress, the Natural Resources Board, hunters, landowners and the public to consider potential changes to Earn-a-Buck or consider other herd control measures that effectively move the herd towards population goals. This year coincides with the regularly scheduled three year review of deer population goals that will provide additional opportunity for public input.

Earn-A-Buck Update

Earn-A-Buck Update
Ben Halverson

All the talk about the earn-a-buck rule seems to have hit home for the DNR.

According to the Associated Press(April 9, 2009), "The state Department of Natural Resources is recommending a 1-year moratorium on an unpopular rule that requires deer hunters to shoot an antlerless deer before they kill a buck.

DNR Secretary Matt Frank said Thursday the earn-a-buck moratorium would be in effect in all of Wisconsin next season except the chronic wasting disease zone in the southern part of the state." View the rest of the article at:

As this progresses, I will continue to post my thoughts and updates. Please add any comments as to any research you would like me to do or any information you would like me to find.

Source: WKOW website,

Legal Help for Hunters: It’s About Time:

Legal Help for Hunters: It’s About Time
Ben Halverson

According to an article in the Journal Sentinel (Smith 2009), “Wisconsin Hunters Rights' Coalition and the Wisconsin Chapters of Safari Club International have retained a law firm in their drive to eliminate Earn-A-Buck regulations and the October antlerless deer hunting season in the state.” All I have to say about this approach is…its about time.

Earn-a-buck regulations, which we all know is shooting a doe before we can harvest a buck. Some think this is simple or very basic tool to helping the DNR regulate the size of the herd. When is it time that we as hunters get a say on how we want to regulate the herd, well it sounds as though we have finally gotten the answer.

According to the article Michael Best & Friedrich is the firm brought on to help change current methods. What I know about Michael Best & Friedrich is that change is on the way. Thank you MB&F!

According to the Wisconsin DNR site “Changing season structure for areas where the population was substantially lower than in previous years by:

  • Preliminarily recommending cutting back the number of Herd Control units (the October gun hunt) from 56 to 19, mostly in the northwest.
  • Recommending reducing the number of Earn a Buck units from 29 in 2008 to 25 this year (outside of CWD units) in the Green Bay and Eau Claire areas.
  • Asking hunters about the elimination of the antlerless hunt in some northeast units that are significantly below a healthy population goal.”
Hunters are great outdoor enthusiasts, passionate lovers of the sport, and yet, simply do not have enough say in how the management of the herd should be done. This is a great step in the right direction of bringing both sides together and coming up with a best fit solution for both the DNR and hunters of Wisconsin.

Source: Hunters' groups enlist legal help in deer review, by Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, April 8, 2009

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, DNR announces up to date preliminary deer harvest figures, March 10, 009

2009 DNR Hearings Set for April 13th

The 2009 Annual DNR Spring Fish and Wildlife Hearings and Conservation Congress County Meetings will take place on Monday, April 13, 2009 at 7 p.m., in each of Wisconsin's 72 counties (hearing notice including rule proposals and hearing locations). Attendees will have a chance to elect county delegates to represent their views on natural resource issues, record their preference for DNR rule proposals and weigh in on a variety of Natural Resources Board and Conservation Congress advisory questions. There is also an opportunity at the end of the hearing to introduce resolutions pertaining to the management of natural resources in Wisconsin. Last year over 6,400 people attended the hearings.

Here are the statewide locations:

Adams Adams County Courthouse, Board Room, 402 Main Street, Friendship
Ashland Ashland Senior High School, Auditorium, 1900 Beaser Avenue, Ashland
Barron Barron Government Center, 330 E. LaSalle Ave., Barron
Bayfield Drummond high School, Auditorium, 52440 Eastern Ave., Drummond
Brown Franklin Middle School, Auditorium, 1234 W. Mason, Green Bay
Buffalo Alma High School, Gymnasium, S1618 STH 35, Alma
Burnett Burnett County Government Center, Room 165, 7410 County Road K, Siren
Calumet Calumet County Courthouse, B025, 206 Court Street, Chilton
Chippewa Chippewa Falls Middle School, Auditorium, 750 Tropicana Blvd., Chippewa Falls
Clark Greenwood High School, Cafetorium, 306 W. Central Ave., Greenwood
Columbia Portage Junior High School, 2505 New Pinery Rd., Portage
Crawford Crawford County Courthouse, Court Room, 220 N. Beaumont Road, Prairie du Chien
Dane Middleton Performing Arts Center at Middleton High School, 2100 Bristol St., Middleton
Dodge Horicon City Hall, 404 E. Lake Street, Horicon
Door Crossroads at Big Creek, 2041 Michigan Ave., Sturgeon Bay
Douglas Brule Town Hall, 5814 S. Maple St., Brule
Dunn Dunn County Fish and Game Club, 1900 Pioneer Ave., Menomonie
Eau Claire South Middle School, Auditorium, 2115 Mitscher Ave., Eau Claire
Florence Florence Natural Resource Center, Basement, Highway 70/101, Florence
Fond du Lac Theisen Middle School, 525 E Pioneer Road, Fond du Lac
Forest Crandon High School, Auditorium, 9750 USH 8 W, Crandon
Grant Lancaster High School, Auditorium, 806 Elm Street, Lancaster
Green Monroe Middle School, 1510 13th Street, Monroe
Green Lake Green Lake High School, Small Gym, 612 Mill St., Green Lake
Iowa Dodgeville High School, Gymnasium, 912 West Chapel Street, Dodgeville
Iron Iron County Courthouse, 300 Taconite St., Hurley
Jackson Black River Falls Middle School, LGI Room, 1202 Pierce Street, Black River Falls
Jefferson Jefferson County Fairgrounds, Activity Center, 503 N. Jackson Ave., Jefferson
Juneau Olson Middle School, Auditorium, 508 Grayside Avenue, Mauston
Kenosha Bristol Grade School, Gymnasium, 20121 83rd Street, Bristol
Kewaunee Kewaunee High School, Auditorium, 911 3rd Street, Kewaunee
La Crosse Onalaska High School, Field House, 700 Hilltop Place, Onalaska
Lafayette Darlington High School, Auditorium, 11838 Center Hill Road, Darlington
Langlade Antigo High School, Volm Auditorium,1900 10th Avenue, Antigo
Lincoln Tomahawk Elementary School, 1048 East Kings Road, Tomahawk
Manitowoc UW Manitowoc, Theater, 705 Viebahn Street, Manitowoc
Marathon D.C. Everest Middle School, 9302 Schofield Avenue, Weston
Marinette Crivitz High School, Auditorium, 400 South Ave, Crivitz
Marquette Montello High School, Community Room, 222 Forest Lane, Montello
Menominee Menominee County Courthouse, Basement, Courthouse Lane, Keshena
Milwaukee Nathan Hale High School, Auditorium, 11601 West Lincoln Avenue, West Allis
Monroe Tomah High School, Cafeteria, 901 Lincoln Ave., Tomah
Oconto Suring High School, Cafeteria, 411 E. Algoma St., Suring
Oneida James Williams Junior High School, 915 Acacia, Rhinelander
Outagamie Riverview Middle School, Auditorium, 101 Oak Street, Kaukauna
Ozaukee Port Washington American Legion, 435 Lake St., Port Washington
Pepin Pepin County Government Center, County Board Room, 740 7th Avenue W., Durand
Pierce Ellsworth Senior High School, Gymnasium, 323 Hillcrest St., Ellsworth
Polk Unity High School, Gymnasium, 908 150th Street/Hwy 46, Balsam Lake
Portage Ben Franklin Junior High School, Auditorium, 2000 Polk Street, Stevens Point
Price Price County Courthouse, County Board Room, 126 Cherry Street, Phillips
Racine Union Grove High School, Auditorium (Use Hwy. 45 School Entrance), 3433 S. Colony Ave., Union Grove
Richland Richland County Courthouse, 181 West Seminary, Richland Center
Rock Pontiac Convention Center, 2809 N. Pontiac Dr., Janesville
Rusk Ladysmith High School, Auditorium, 1700 E. Edgewood Ave., Ladysmith
Sauk UW – Baraboo Sauk County, R.G. Brown Theater, 1006 Connie Road, Baraboo
Sawyer Hayward Area Middle School, Cafetorium, 10408 Greenwood Ln., Hayward
Shawano Shawano Community Middle School, LGI Room, 1050 S. Union Street, Shawano
Sheboygan Sheboygan Falls High School, Auditorium, 220 Amherst Avenue, Sheboygan Falls
St. Croix WI Indianhead Technical College, Cashman Conf. Room, 1019 S. Knowles Ave., New Richmond
Taylor Taylor Co. Fairgrounds, Multipurpose Building, State Hwy 13 and Hwy 64 Intersection, Medford
Trempealeau Whitehall City Center, Gymnasium, 36245 Park Street, Whitehall
Vernon Viroqua High School, 100 Blackhawk Drive, Viroqua
Vilas Town of Plum Lake Town Hall, 235 Lake St., Sayner
Walworth Delavan/Darien High School, Auditorium, 150 Cummings, Delavan
Washburn WI Ag Research Station, W6646 Hwy 70, Spooner
Washington Washington County Fair Park, Exhibit Hall, 3000 Hwy PV, West Bend
Waukesha Waukesha Co. Tech. College (WCTC), Anderson Education Center, 800 Main St., Pewaukee
Waupaca Waupaca High School, Auditorium, E2325 King Road, Waupaca
Waushara Waushara County Court House, 2nd Floor Old Courtroom, 209 S. St. Marie, Wautoma
Winnebago Webster Stanley Auditorium, 915 Hazel Street, Oshkosh
Wood Pittsville High School, Auditorium, 5459 Elementary Ave., Pittsville

Monday, April 6, 2009

Standing up for the Conservation of Whitetail Deer

Standing up for the Conservation of Whitetail Deer

Whitetail Deer hunting has become a hobby, tradition and passion for many in Wisconsin. One area of deer hunting that Wisconsin hunters are passionate about and yet take for granted is the area of conservation. Wisconsin hunters need to know that present-day deer hunting conditions are the result of the conservation efforts from those who have been passionate in the sport in the past.

It is the duty of those of us who enjoy whitetail hunting to do all that they can to insure the future of the sport. It is inevitable that hunting conditions will change with the public land shrinking, hunters using the form of bait, and the testing of different seasons from our friends at the Department of Natural resources. Although, we cannot fight the inevitable, we should attempt to preserve our hunting rights in areas which remain suitable to the deer herds. We must watch any and all legislative proposals which affect the sport, and we should support those which are beneficial and oppose those which are detrimental to hunting as we know it today. This may seem very straightforward but in light of recent debate over the Earn-A-Buck rule, there is no better time than now to be informed and vocal than now.

With states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan are considering the problem of overpopulation. DNR officials have take the correct approach and asked the hunting public to stand up and voice their opinion and that is what they plan to do. April 13 is when we will all get a chance to voice what we want to see done with the management of game animals. Get informed by listening and if you can, stand up and be heard.

Creating a Food Plot Start to Finish: What to Do With the Soil Test Results

Creating a Food Plot Start to Finish: What to Do With the Soil Test Results

...continued weekly post on creating the perfect whitetail deer food plot.

So far you have take the soil samples you need from the area that you plan to plant your crop. You have submitted your soil samples to be tested and now you have the results. What do you learn from the results and what do you do with them?

Soil test reports will typically be returned with a page for each sample that you submit. Each page will have a summary of the nutrients in the soil and usually a table(or graph) showing which nutrients are low, adequate, or high. Each page will also contain a lime and fertilizer enhancement recommendation page or some call an amendment.

Each amendment will most likely recommend the enhancements needed for that exact soil sample so each sample amendment different. Unless you have the money to treat each section with the exact nutrient needs, I recommend you try to look for trends in the amendments. Look for a general amount of lime and fertilizer that will cover your soil and apply to the whole food plot. For most soils, you will be covered and wont have to spend a large amount of time segmenting each section out and applying fertilizer to one, lime to another.

For general help on soils, two tons of lime per acre is the minimum amount and will not "overlime" any food plot that calls for lime. Lime should be applied five to six months before you plan to plant any crop. This will give the lime time to impact the soil.

Fertilizer application will depend on how easy of access you have to the plot. If you can't bring a large applicator into the food plot area, like a tractor, try using a concentrated fertilizer. Fertilizer recommendations are a little easier to read, you will be given the recommendations of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. If the recommendation is to apply 80 pounds of nitrogen, 80 pounds of phosphorus, and 80 pounds of potassium per acre, the nutrients could be supplied in 800 pounds of 10-10-10, 615 pounds of 13-13-13, or 400 pounds of 20-20-20. Obviously, if you are spreading this by hand, then you may want to consider using 20-20-20, even if it is more expensive.

Soil tests are the hardest part of the food plot creation. To make life easier, you can always work through your local greenhouse, they will be able to recommend the type of fertilizer based on your soil test.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Its time to vote on how we hunt

I have been recently reading handfuls of articles regarding the deer population, how we should control the population, what baiting does to the population, etc.... is it time to finally have a set of annual votes for hunters across the state of Wisconsin to vote on.

I know that time and money are not an abundant resource for the DNR nor our state leaders so I think its only fair we cast the one stone that kills both hunting pun intended.

We have heard numerous suggestions on how the 2009 Whitetail Deer Hunting Gun season will be shaped and yet we have not heard how us hunters will have a voice in the final say.

I will state this very simply, come up with your solutions, allow the Wisconsin hunters to voice their opinions, and come up with a voting system that allows hunters to dictate the future of the sport in Wisconsin.

I will continue to research how this will be done, how it has been done in the recent past and get all my readers up to speed.

To be continued....

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Learn to Hunt For Deer - 4 Easy Steps To Master

Many hunters know the strategies on how to hunt deer, but novices and beginners may need some advice to get on the right track to bag that first buck. Here are some basic tips to begin hunting deer.
1. Start Early.
Hunting seasons are limited by dates and by daylight hours. Guns are not to be fired before sunrise or after sunset for the safety of all hunters involved. However, one of the best deer hunting tips you can follow is to start early. You should be in your deer stand or hunting blind before sunrise. Getting there that early will diminish the possibility of being noticed by the deer.
2. Remain late.
People who have acquired knowledge and offer deer hunting tips usually will tell you the ideal times to see deer are when the sun comes up and when the sun goes down. The lowering amount of sunlight during these times of the day can really affect the deer's eyesight, so besides the usual eating at these times, they may have a more difficult time seeing you as hard is it will be for you to see them.
3. Avoid Odors.
The obvious, try to cover your scent. Try to keep abnormal odors limited so that you won't disturb the oversensitive perception of smell that a deer has as much as you can. Human odors easily scare whitetail deer, and one of the greatest deer hunting tips to remember is to allow the wilderness to overpower your odor. This is one of the rare occasions that it might be better for you to wash later on instead of the morning before you come to the woods. An even better idea, is to spend the money on a cover scent that can be found in any department or outdoors store.
Silence Is The Key.
The most important thing to remember is, silence is the key. Remember that deer have a very keen sense of hearing. It has been said, that deer can hear and smell up to 30 yards away. If you do anything but whisper, they will be sure to hear you. Sometimes, even whispering is too loud if it is a calm day. If you remember no other deer hunting tip, remember this one. The most minute sounds when you are preparing to shoot can chase that prized buck away. While there are more detailed tips available to make sure you get the most out of your trip, these tips on how to hunt deer are the basics and will get you started down the road to success and enjoyment as a deer hunter.

About the Author
If you need to learn more deer hunting secrets, you can get all the information you need at

Outdoor cooking class offered

Outdoor cooking class offered
Weekly News Article Published: March 31, 2009 by the Central Office

BABCOCK, Wis. -- Great food makes any outdoor experience better. Hunters, anglers, campers, and others interested in outdoor cooking can join the Sandhill Outdoor Skills Center staff to learn and practice techniques for creating successful outdoor meals.

Topics include building a proper cooking fire, equipment, cooking techniques, menu ideas and recipes. Lunch will be whatever the participants cook. The course will be offered Saturday, May 2 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Registration is limited to the first 25 people who mail in their $25 per person fee by April 24. Participants may stay overnight in the center’s dorm either prior to or following the event for a donation of $15 per person per night.

Checks should be made out to DNR-Skills Center. Include the name of the class, the names of each participant, and the address, e-mail address, and daytime phone number of one person in each party, and send to: Sandhill-DNR, Box 156, Babcock, WI 54413.

The Sandhill Outdoor Skills Center is located 20 miles west of Wisconsin Rapids on County Highway X, 1 mile north of Highway 80 near Babcock, Wisconsin on the 9,000 acre Department of Natural Resources Sandhill Wildlife Area.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Sandhill Skills Center at: (715) 884-6333 or (715) 884-2437

View all articles in this issue or check our previous Weekly News Issues.