Friday, April 22, 2011

DNR announces proposed 2011 deer hunting season structure

MADISON – Department of Natural Resources wildlife management officials will propose a 2011 deer season structure that promises a return to a more traditional hunting framework by eliminating the October antlerless hunt outside of the Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) management zone and allowing the first deer to be either sex in the CWD management zone.

“We hope hunters will see we’ve been listening to their concerns and that we are taking steps toward the kind of deer season they want to see in Wisconsin,” said DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp.

“We need the cooperation of our partners, the landowners and the hunters to help manage this deer herd. That is why we’ve decided to implement herd control tools more acceptable to hunters in 2011,” she said.
CWD zone
Specific 2011 deer season framework recommendations that will be presented to the state Natural Resources Board for review on April 26-27 include:
  • In Deer Management Units where deer populations are below goals, limiting or eliminating antlerless harvest.
  • In 95 units outside the CWD zone where deer populations are substantially above goals, unlimited $2 antlerless tags but no October firearm season.
  • In the CWD disease management zone, hunters’ first deer can be either sex, with earn-a-buck requirements kicking in after that. CWD management zone buck stickers earned in 2010 will be honored in 2011 and hunters can obtain up to four free CWD antlerless tags per day. These tags can only be used in the CWD zone. There will be October and Holiday hunts in the CWD zone.
Last year, 18 below-population-goal deer management units in northern Wisconsin were designated as “zero quota” units meaning that neither gun deer hunters nor archery deer hunters could shoot an antlerless deer. The herd has rebounded in a number of these units, but in eight where the population continues below goal (Units 3, 7, 29B, 34, 35, 39, 44, and 45), DNR will recommend continued “zero antlerless quotas.”
Over the past year in response to hunter reports of seeing fewer deer on the landscape, DNR has held meetings with hunters and solicited deer sighting feedback through its website and other means.
“National experts say we have one of the best population estimate systems in the nation – but no system is perfect. We are taking efforts to make our population estimates better and to figure out how the uneven distribution of deer on public versus private land is impacting those numbers.

“We want to work with hunters. We want to come to agreement on numbers and goals and harvest antlerless deer where needed. Accordingly, we’ve initiated deer research in northwest and east-central Wisconsin to answer hunter questions about predators and buck harvest rates to further improve our system,” said Stepp.
Deer hunting is a strong tradition in the state and an important economic driver. Deer hunting in Wisconsin creates more than $1 billion of economic activity annually, and supports 16,000 jobs. Wisconsin has one of the top three deer harvests per square mile of any state in the country, one of the highest buck harvests per square mile, and the highest number of trophy bucks registered with Boone and Crockett (gun) and Pope and Young (archery).

Each year, wildlife managers use data from the past years’ hunt – from hunter deer registration stubs, fawn production observations, winter stress reports and more to estimate the size of the deer herd by management unit. The number of deer by unit is compared to deer population goals, and a season structure aimed at keeping deer in line with goals and habitat carrying capacity is recommended to the state Natural Resources Board.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: The full proposal to the Natural Resources Board will be available on DNR website later today or tomorrow. Refer to the Natural Resources Board agenda for April and click on the deer season framework item.]

News Release Published: April 14, 2011 by the Central Office
Contact(s): Land Administrator Kurt Thiede, (608)266-5833
Source: Wisconsin DNR,

1 comment:

  1. I want to know why the DNR is changing in Columbia county form (Earn A Buck) to (Herd Control)I don't understand why it is changed.Like people say the DNR doesn't know what the deer population is so they just change the hunting to something else..... to see if that works better for the deer population. My opinion is we were hunting the (Earn A Buck)because we didn't have enough bucks around and that is what the DNR told us. But now they changed it to (Herd control) Did the DNR change it because they found out there is enough bucks around that the population of deer is getting to high? And they want to trick people in shooting Bucks and not doe . Sense its herd control everyone is just going to shoot the bucks and leave the doe alone. Then the DNR is going to have to change the hunting corse again because there will be a really low population of bucks. That means there will be no White Tail deer around because if you have to little amount of bucks they wont breed properly. Was this a good choice? I think it was a bad Choice because everyone is going to go crazy when hunting season comes alone. They will be shooting all the buck they can.This is my last year of youth hunt so I have the opportunity to shoot a Buck in youth hunt and in the bow season also in gun season... Do you realize how many bucks one person can shoot this season. I guess we will find out when White Tail season comes alone. Don't think I didn't worn you