Natural Resources Board adds three news questions to spring hearing questionnaire mix

Terry Hilgenberg, board member from Shawano, was re-elected chair of the Wisconsin Natural Resources Board for 2018. (Photo by Tim Eisele)

Besides re-electing the three officers of the Natural Resources Board (Terry Hilgenberg as chairman, Fred Prehn as vice-chairman, and Julie Anderson as secretary), the board added three new questions to the 2018 spring hearing questionnaire.

Each year board members may add their own questions to those already proposed by the DNR wildlife and fisheries staff.

Gary Zimmer, board member from Rhinelander, added a question asking if people would support a $5 annual fee for all users of state fishery, wildlife and natural areas and leased public hunting grounds. The funds would be dedicated to support fish and wildlife habitat management on those properties.

Prehn, board member from Wausau, added the question, “Do you favor eliminating the group deer hunting law so that the only person who can fill a tag is the hunter who had been issued the deer harvest authorization?”

And, Greg Kazmierski, board member from Pewaukee, said that the crossbow season was established with a two-year trial. Now, the state knows that the crossbow season did not produce the anticipated increase in deer hunter numbers. But the season did create a dramatic shift of all hunters into crossbow season, where their odds of harvesting a buck are 50 percent greater than either gun or bow hunters.

To give all deer hunters an equal chance to harvest a buck, Kazmierski added the question,  “Do you support the DNR adjusting the length of the crossbow season (for those that are not disabled or elderly), to better reflect harvest success rates of bucks similar to the gun and archery season?”

The questions will be added to those offered by the DNR and the Conservation Congress at the spring hearings in each county on Monday, April 9.

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