State wildlife officials will try to have more deer in places where hunters complained about a lack of animals last fall. A plan approved Wednesday by the Natural Resources Board takes effect for the 2010 gun deer hunt. However, the head of the state’s largest conservation group doesn’t expect results right away.
“We anticipate the harvest this year will still be down, but this seems to be a workable system,” says George Meyer of the Wisconsin Wildlife Federation.
The plan would allow hunters to only kill bucks in 18 management zones where the population is under goal, up from 13 last year. It also scales back the number of zones with antlerless-only hunts from 50-to-46. But in places with chronic wasting disease, the effort continues to limit the herd, so hunters there will still have to shoot a doe in order to get a buck.
DNR Secretary Matt Frank calls it a good statewide compromise. The changes come after hunters complained that previous policies by the agency devastated a deer herd which officials admitted they over-estimated.