DNR predicts ample targets for upcoming deer bow-hunting season
Officials with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources say the odds are good for bow hunters hoping of a deer in the upcoming season which starts Sept. 13.
DNR officials estimate the state's deer herd at between 1.5 and 1.7 million deer.
"In all areas of the state with the exception of a number of units in the north deer are plentiful, said Jason Fleener, a DNR wildlife biologist.
"Last year's winter was "severe" in some units in the north central part of the state. Historically this has resulted in a reduction of about 20 percent in fawn-doe ratios," he added.
As a result, those units are being dropped from the Herd Control Unit status and the antlerless quotas for the units were reduced.
With most all other units in the state over deer population goals, bow hunters should have a better chance to see some deer.
Fleener advises bow hunters to plan their hunt according to the particular unit being hunted.
In some units hunters can harvest an antlerless deer which will qualify them for an Earn-A-Buck (EAB) deer. Earn-A-Bucks units are found primarily in the southwest and southeast parts of the state.
All hunters in Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Florence, Forest, Iron, Langlade, Lincoln, Oneida, Polk, Price, Rusk, Sawyer, Taylor, Vilas and Washburn counties are asked to participate in the chronic wasting disease surveillance this year.
The northern region needs to collect samples from 500 deer from each county as part of its disease surveillance program.
"We need hunter cooperation to help insure a healthy deer herd in the north," said Northern Region Wildlife Expert, Mike Zeckmeister, 'and that is what these periodic disease checks do."
The early archery deer season runs from Saturday Sept. 13 through Nov. 20. The late season starts on Dec. 1 and runs to Jan. 4, 2009.
Archery harvest in all CWD, EAB and most Herd Control units are restricted to antlerless-only between Oct. 16-19, and in all units statewide Dec. 11-14, except non-quota units and most state parks, according to DNR officials.
Bow hunters are reminded to wear blaze orange any time a gun deer season is in effect, including the statewide Oct. 11-12 youth gun deer hunt.