FEBRUARY 12, 2011 | SHOW #607
Should Wisconsin residents be allowed to vote on Conservation Congress Spring Hearing questions via the Internet?
YES 67% | NO 33% | MAYBE 0% | UNDECIDED 0% |
Do you support the management of largemouth and smallmouth bass as separate species and the establishment of separate size and bag limits as needed?
BACKGROUND: Congress’s bass, muskie questions lead hearing agenda
(courtesy of Wisconsin Outdoor News)
In the Jan. 28 edition of Wisconsin Outdoor News, contributing writer Tim Eisele reports:
Wausau, Wis. – The Conservation Congress Executive Council met in Wuasau on Jan. 7 and approved nine fisheries and fishing advisory questions for the annual fish and game hearings that take place the second Monday of April in every county of the state – April 11 this year.
One of the fisheries questions asks sportsmen their thoughts about managing largemouth bass and smallmouth bass with separate regulations. In the question’s preamble, the Congress Warm Water Study Committee explains that the DNR manages bass jointly, just as it does several species of panfish. In most waters the bag limits, size limits and season dates are the same, even though largemouths and smallmouths are different species.
Anglers are not required to know for sure if the fish they catch is a largemouth or smallmouth bass. Establishing separate seasons might allow for increased fishing opportunities because each species would be managed separately, according to members of the committee.
The downside of the proposed change is that some anglers may decide not to fish for fear of misidentifying a fish and possibly receiving a citation.
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WISCONSIN HUNTING & FISHING SEASONS
Winter Severity Index monitors health of northern deer herd
SPOONER Wis. – State wildlife staff are again monitoring the effects of winter on the state’s northern deer herd using as system known as the Winter Severity Index – and so far things look pretty good. The index uses a combination and accumulation of cold temperatures and deep snows that historically have proven to affect the health and population of deer.
Biologists and other department staff add the number of days with daily low temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit (F) and the number of days with 18 inches or more of snow on the ground. Up to 50 combined points at the end of the winter is considered mild, from 51 to 80 is considered moderate, 81 and over is considered severe, and any totals over 100 points are considered very severe.
To date, most of northern Wisconsin has snow depths that allow good deer movement, according to Mike Zeckmeister, Department of Natural Resources northern region wildlife biologist.
“About half of our stations are reporting winter points over 20, the other half are 20 or less,” Zeckmeister said. “What stands out this winter is that it started early. We have had below average low temperatures, and snow depths have just hovered below the 18-inch reporting level at many stations up to the end of January.”
Zeckmeister said that with a little more snow, most stations will be adding snow days to their reporting. “Depending on what happens for the rest of the winter, we could go either way. We will factor all of this in, including the final Winter Severity, when we set deer quotas later this spring,” he said.
Court Ruling Puts Hunting Rights on Public Land in Danger
Anti-Hunters Trying to Capitalize on Opportunity to Attack Our Hunting Heritage; Your Voice is Needed
A Federal Circuit Court ruling on the Forest Plan for the Huron-Manistee National Forest in central Michigan mandated that the Forest consider banning all firearm hunting on all or portions of 13 Semi-primitive Areas.
This court ruling sets a troubling precedent that could pose a threat to gun hunting on portions of our federal lands across the nation. The Forest Service is accepting public comment on the two alternatives until Feb. 11.
Anti-hunters are generating a lot of comments into the Forest Service and it is critical that hunters stand up to have their opinions heard. If you have not submitted your comment already, please take a few minutes and submit this importation information.
On Dec. 28, the Forest Service published a Notice of Intent to comply with Court direction and develop a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement that will review the proposal to ban firearm hunting on the identified areas.
The Forest Service proposes only two alternatives. The first is “No-Action;” this would reaffirm existing management direction on the Forest and continue to allow hunting on the identified areas. The second is “Modified Closure Alternative;” this would ban firearm hunting on some portion of the identified areas.
Below is a sample comment to help give you a starting point for developing your comments. Please take a few moments to personalize your comments and include what you believe to be the impact of a decision to ban gun hunting. Adding this information will help the Forest Service make a well informed decision.
If you wish to have legal standing to file an appeal, be sure to include your name and address.
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