Involve real people again in Wisconsin deer hunting and perhaps bring back some tradition
The call of returning to “tie an old ribbon” on a deer’s leg by seven retired DNR wardens and a biologist and plus a positive vote by Conservation Congress spring hearing participants, should get everyone’s attention.
Wisconsin Senate Bill 294 agrees.
But there is more to this suggested do over; much more, than dealing with poachers, fair chase, deer management, and general license compliance.
It runs deeper. It suggests there really is this thing called tradition. It suggests some traditions may even help with hunter involvement, hunter recruitment and hunter satisfaction.
It’s about getting hunters, and others, involved in deer hunting. Really involved. More than just grabbing a phone, buying a license, shooting a deer, and again grabbing a phone.
And it needs to go further. It should be bringing more hunters transporting deer to in-person registrations, wearing a backtag, helping with deer research, and actual scouting rather than looking at a map on a computer. It means talking to landowners and non-hunters.
There is room, but the room does not have to be large, for those who want to do almost everything from the truck phone. That convenience may be the only way some can find time to hunt. Let’s allow that, too.
Have you heard the formal talk of encouraging hunters to get deer tested, assist in surveillance efforts, implementing mandatory CWD testing and in-person registration in six towns (not townships; there is no such municipality in Wisconsin), and just kibitzing with fellow hunters at bars, restaurants and cheese factories?
All of a sudden we’ve gone from required e-registration to “we need your presence at a registration stations.” And “we need your help getting data.” And “we need your help adopting a whatever.”
Nice start DNR retirees, Conservation Congress, and Wisconsin Senate. Now’s the time to go further and to close the deal and most of all be complete hunters.