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Michigan Waterfowlers: Share your thoughts on 2013 Seasons, DNR Law Enforcement

February 5th, 2014

The next Citizen’s Waterfowl Advisory Committee (CWAC)(**for explanation see below) meeting will be March 8th, 9am-3:30pm. The meeting will take place at the Ralph A. MacMullan Conference Center. The agenda will be available at the meeting, but this is the meeting each year where CWAC members will discuss with the DNR their thoughts on the past year’s waterfowl hunting seasons in Michigan.

Do you have any thoughts to share with MUCC’s CWAC representative, Steve Wyckoff? Please share your thoughts in the comments below or email Steve directly at dnswyckoff@gmail.com. Specifically, consider these items:

  • How was your waterfowl season in 2013? How did the timing of the season impact your hunt, positively or negatively?
  • Do you have any recommended changes that should be considered?
  • There is agreement among CWAC members to try to set a consistent opening day for each Zone for three seasons (2013-2015), which is as follows: Zone 1–Saturday closest to Sept. 24, Zone 2-First Saturday in October, Zone 3-Second Saturday in October as long as the future federal framework allows for a 60-day season. How did that work for 2013?

In addition to waterfowl regulations, CWAC will also discuss waterfowl hunting enforcement. The Law Enforcement Division (LED) of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources is in the process of developing a strategic plan. A step in this process is to obtain input from external stakeholders. During the CWAC meeting, a Conservation Officer will be on hand to listen to member’s responses to several questions dealing with what is important to the waterfowl hunting community in the area of natural resource law enforcement and their impression of LED.

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**The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) establishes frameworks for migratory bird hunting seasons, and states must choose seasons within those frameworks. In Michigan, the DNR has been working with hunters serving on the Citizen’s Waterfowl Advisory Committee (CWAC), to come up with the annual proposal for waterfowl regulations for more than 30 years.

What is CWAC?

CWAC is comprised of 12 members-at-large and representatives from 8 waterfowl hunting and conservation organizations. The length of each term on CWAC is limited to three years. Members of CWAC are representatives from organizations directly interested in waterfowl hunting and representatives every part of the state. The distribution of CWAC members is based upon geographic representation of where waterfowl hunters live, based upon duck stamp sales. Recently, efforts have been made to include regional members who more closely resemble the average hunter or occasional hunter, rather than only avid waterfowl hunters. Anyone interested in becoming a CWAC member should work with their local DNR Wildlife Biologist  to be added to the list of potential members.

Whether you serve on the CWAC or not, MUCC also encourages hunters to get to know your local DNR Wildlife Biologist. They can be a wealth of information on changes they are seeing in the wildlife populations, habitat management projects coming up in your area, and areas where volunteers could help. By developing this relationship, you can also share your hunting experiences and habitat priorities for the area.

If you are an MUCC member who would like an opportunity to get more involved in waterfowl hunting regulations, we are also looking for a waterfowl hunter to join MUCC’s Wildlife Committee! Please contact MUCC’s Resource Policy Manager Amy Trotter for more details at 517-346-6484.

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