Be prepared for a safe, enjoyable hunting season

CAPITOL CONNECTION
Joe Leibham  9th Senatorial District

Hunting is an important part of our outdoor tradition and heritage. In Wisconsin, hunting is not only an important recreational and herd management activity, but it is also a big part of our economy as well. According to the 2011 U.S Fish & Wildlife National Survey, the total annual expenditures for hunting activities in the state of Wisconsin equaled over $2.5 billion. Wisconsin’s tourism, food, lodging, and transportation industries are greatly affected by hunting.

As we all begin to prepare for the hunt, I thought I would share some helpful information and resources about Wisconsin’s deer hunting season.

Tips for a Safe Hunt

Wisconsin enters the 2013 gun-deer season with a reputation as a state dedicated to safe hunting for everyone. A big reason for this is the fact that more than one million of our citizens have participated in hunter safety courses since 1967. Thanks to the efforts of many volunteer instructors, hunting in Wisconsin is safe. Wisconsin has a 10-year average fatality rate of .36 fatalities per 100,000 hunters. The 10-year average rate for all hunting incidents (this includes gun, crossbow fatalities and injury incidents) is 4.2 incidents per 100,000 hunters.

DNR Conservation Warden Jon King, who heads the Hunter Education Program, offers the following tips to ensure hunting in Wisconsin remains a safe and fun activity for the entire family:

Four rules of firearm safety:

• Treat every firearm as if it is loaded

• Always point the muzzle in a safe direction

• Be certain of your target and what is beyond it

• Keep your finger outside the trigger guard until ready to shoot

Here are some easy tree stand tips to follow:

• Always use a full-body harness.

• Always unload your firearm while climbing into or out of the stand.

• During the ascent or descent: maintain three points of contact -- two hands and one foot, or two feet and one hand.

Deer Drive Tips:

• Review the four firearm safety principles.

• Reconfirm you have positively identified your target.

• Reconfirm you have a safe backstop for your bullet.

• Review and stick to your hunting plan. Make sure all in the hunting party honor it.

These tips offer helpful reminders for hunters. However, be sure to read and review all the rules and regulations before you head out to the woods this year. A link to the 2013 Hunting Regulations and Hours is available at: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/hunt/regulations.html.

Wisconsin Deer Donation

While the annual fall deer season is important to Wisconsin’s outdoor heritage and tradition, it has also become synonymous with fighting hunger in our state. The Wildlife Damage Deer Donation program will once again be continuing Wisconsin’s autumn tradition. Since the program began in 2000, hunters have donated over 83,000 deer which were processed into over 3.7 million pounds of ground venison. Wisconsin has a network of venison donation efforts including: Hunt for the Hungry, which operates in the Green Bay area; Target Hunger, which handles donations from the Chronic Wasting Disease Management Zone; and the Wisconsin Deer Donation Program, which covers all remaining areas of the state. USDA - Wildlife Services staff also help administer the programs in 49 counties.

For more information on how to donate your deer, follow the 5 easy steps provided by the Wisconsin DNR: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/hunt/donation.html.

New Hunter Initiatives

First-time buyers get a price break on fishing and hunting fun

Get a major price break on your hunting, fishing or trapping license if you are a first-time buyer or are buying your first license in 10 or more years. Discounted fees are available for residents and nonresidents alike and are automatically applied when you buy a license. Many first time resident licenses are available for only $5.00. More information - http:// dnr.wi.gov/permits/firsttimebuyers. html

First Deer Certificate

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently introduced a new program to provide First Deer Certificates to new hunters at the request of family and friends. As we seek ways to expand the tradition of hunting in our state, the DNR created this program to help bolster the achievements of new hunters.

To request a First Deer Certificate, please visit this website: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/hunt/firstdeer.asp and complete all of the information. Be sure to upload a photo of the hunter with their first deer with the application.

Learn to Hunt Events and Mentored Hunting

Learn to Hunt events combine classroom instruction and field work before a novice goes hunting with an experienced hunter. They are a great way to introduce someone new to Wisconsin’s hunting heritage. You can find a listing of upcoming events here: http://dnr.wi.gov/education/outdoorskills/lth.html.

Mentored Hunting offers another way to introduce someone new to hunting in Wisconsin. This one-on-one mentoring opportunity gives first-time hunters a chance to try hunting and enables veteran hunters to pass on their passion for the outdoors and help keep Wisconsin’s hunting heritage strong. Find out more about mentored hunting here: http://dnr.wi.gov/education/outdoorSkills/mentor.html.

Other helpful links and information from Wisconsin DNR

There is a lot of great information on the DNR’s website: www.dnr.wi.gov related to youth hunting, disabled deer hunting and agricultural damage hunting permits. You will also find the 2013 Fall Hunting & Trapping Forecast at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/hunt/documents/forecast.pdf. And the 2013 deer season dates at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/hunt/dates.html.

If you have any further questions or concerns regarding hunting in the state of Wisconsin feel free to contact one of the DNR hotlines below:

1-800-TIP-WDNR or 1-800- 847-9367 - Confidentially report suspected wildlife, recreational, and environmental violations.

1-888-936-7463 - Contact a Customer Service Representative for general questions seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Like many of you, I am looking forward to the hunting season. While I always hope for success, the great outdoor experience is always enjoyable regardless of the end result. Thanks to everyone who will assist in managing our herd while stimulating our state’s economy.


Most recent cover pages:













Poll
POLL: Do you think Elkhart Lake made the right decision in not allowing Strawberry the pot-bellied pig?:

Copyright 2009-2018 The Plymouth Review, All Rights Reserved

Contact Information

113 E. Mill St., Plymouth WI 53073
Local: 920-893-6411 Toll Free: 1-877-467-6591
Fax: 920-893-5505