ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Amid complaints by hunters, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says it will begin reassessing its deer population goals this spring.

Steve Merchant, the DNR’s wildlife programs manager, says those goals have been reached across most of the state. But as deer numbers have been brought down to goal levels in many areas, and even raised in some, hunters have been saying they’re not seeing as many deer as they did before.

So Merchant says the agency wants to revisit population goals in southwestern and north-central Minnesota to strike the right balance between hunters, landowners and other interests.

There will be a public input process similar to what the DNR has used before. The agency plans to listen to stakeholders prior to setting bag limits for the 2012 deer season.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (14)
  1. change it again? says:

    First it was shoot the does and leave the bucks alone. We muzzleloaders could shoot either a buck or a doe. They allowed people to hunt multiple seasons. Then suddenly they are freaked out that so many sluggers jumped into the muzzle loader season. The line becomes shoot the bucks and leave the does. The counties I hunt became buck only until this past fall. The DNR stated that doe numbers in the SW were brought up to their goal and things were going to stay the same. Now this? The article is brief and short on detail, but it is also apparent that the DNR does not have the means to efffectively measure or manage the deer population. Its nice that they respond to hunter complaints, but it would be nicer if they got their act together.

    1. yep...changes needed says:

      read the articles in your MN Outdoor News instead o’ ‘CCO.Wisconny has some devistated herds in northern county’s from the past antlerless seasons and increased predation by the booming wolf/coyote/black bear populations

      1. change it again? says:

        Yes, the Outdoor News is the best source of information for DNR issues. It was there that the DNR stated that their goals for SW Minnesota were met and everything would probably stay the same. I guess I’ll wait for the next issues to see what this is actually all about. Good advice.

  2. foresight says:

    That’s what you get when unchecked poaching, continues. Oh, what theses eyes have seen. I have witnessed the look of despair, in the one surviving buck over three, one under three, and nothing else out there to replenish. But I will say, ‘ I told you so.’

    1. oh right says:

      oh what a crock. Overall the deer herd is large and healthy. Poaching is always a problem, but it does not threaten depopulation. I don’t know what your motivation is for lying and spreading disinformation, but at the very least it shows you to be a morally bankrupt individual.

      1. yeah, bite says:

        Obviously you can’t be speaking for every region in the state. Rather, shouldn’t you be concerned..?You sound like you have a guilty conscience. Do you know what a passenger pigeon was?

        1. git-r-dones says:

          That’s right, A person who cares about nature, and wildlife cannot be morally corrupt, but a poacher can. Oh, right, can you even spell your own name?

        2. oh right says:

          The passenger pigeon was a victim of unregulated market hunting, not poaching. Again, poaching is a problem but it does not threaten the deer population, which overall is in very good health.

        3. oh right says:

          What region are you speaking for? Everyone should be concerned about poaching, but your assertion that the deer in any region are being completely exterminated by poaching is absurd. Calling you on your lies and disinformation does not make me feel guilty in the least. Do you have a guilty conscience for lying?

          1. hunter says:

            oh, right, read what Pat says. He’s right. You are agitated, and sound as any one in denial. People in denial have special problems.

  3. citizen00 says:

    I bet Wolves got all the Deer. Hunt the wolves then the deer population will rise again.

  4. John says:

    DNR = DO NOTHING RIGHT !!!!!!!

  5. Pat says:

    The reason “hunters” aren’t seeing deer is because most of the “hunters” don’t hunt. They ride their ATV into the woods before dawn, sit up in a tree over whatever legal/illegal bait they can find, and wait. When a deer wanders by they shoot.

    Whether there are more of less deer does not come into play if all you are doing is sitting in a tree waiting. This year past, with a high, high wind on opening day, the deer lay down and did not move. Deer don’t like high wind. By day two,the deer became aware of the thousands of “hunters” intruding into their land, and they became cautious. Thus “hunters” did not get their opening day, easy shot as in prior years. If “hunters” want to get a deer, they should try to learn to hunt. Forget the ATV and stand and bait, and hunt. It is not easy, but possible, if you put your mind to it, get out of the tree, and hunt.

    1. hunter says:

      Amen, Pat. You definitely are one person of high standards, and do things correctly. You’re a lost breed, sadly. ATV’s should not be allowed for any hunting’s.

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