NRC Delays Decision on Deer Permit Recommendation

The Natural Resource Commission (NRC) is continuing to discuss the issuance of Deer Management Assistance Permits (DMAPs) and what special provisions these permits may carry. The proposed Wildlife Conservation Order, originally scheduled for a decision in July, will now be finalized in August to decide  whether permit holders will be allowed to use firearms during archery season on a case-by-case basis. The other suggestion from agricultural landowners holding DMAPs was to extend shooting time after hunting hours, allowing for night shooting under DMAPS. Wildlife Chief Russ Mason will not be allowing night shooting for all DMAP holders, but instead will use it in very limited circumstances.
2975135737_aa83f40c3c_zIn the meantime between now and August, the NRC's Wildlife and Fisheries Committee Chair John Matonich is taking prudent action to research and have discussion with agriculture and hunting interests that will be affected by Wildlife Conservation Order No. 10. While the agriculture industry is lobbying for increased expansion of DMAP authorities, the hunting community is suggesting that these are unnecessary changes before other methods have been tried, such as increasing hunter access to land or attempting to prevent or deter deer from harming the crops. MUCC believes this is a matter of economics and increased crop production and values, rather than of too high of deer populations, and we must try to figure out how to increase the tolerance of deer presence among agricultural community members while still providing management tools where needed.
As we have mentioned before (see here), MUCC, the Michigan Bow Hunters Association, Quality Deer Management Association and other individual hunters and deer advisory groups have argued for more hunter access rather than expanded DMAPs for farmers and other landowners. By allowing more hunters on agricultural lands, the problem deer will be dealt with without the added safety concerns or without diminishing the other hunter's experience.
MUCC will be an active contributor and voice in discussions with the DNR and NRC to ensure the rights of hunters and proper conservation techniques will be used first in lieu of actions that could negatively affect the hunt and safety of archery season hunters. To view the proposed NRC’s amendment click here.
We encourage deer hunters to contact the NRC; Click here to find their contact information.

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