Deer Feeding and Baiting Rules

By: Zac Schultz
By: Zac Schultz

A legislative committee has asked the Department of Natural Resources to relax some of the rules surrounding baiting and feeding deer.

The DNR calls the request a "disappointing setback."

The current rules that ban baiting and feeding are set to expire April 10. In exchange for extending the rules, the Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules wants the DNR to make a few changes.

Under the new rules, baiting would be allowed north of Highway 10 during deer season. Hunters would be restricted to two gallons of bait for 40 acres.

Feeding would be allowed everywhere in the state outside the eradication zone. Homeowners could feed up to two gallons within 100 yards of the house.

Wildlife biologists for the DNR think nose-to-nose contact over bait piles is one way chronic wasting disease can be spread.

Eliminating baiting and feeding would prevent an outbreak from rapidly spreading among the population.

Many hunters and nature lovers oppose the ban, especially since CWD has not been found outside the eradication zone in southern Wisconsin.

The Secretary of the DNR said they have not had time to evaluate whether they will comply with the request. If they don't, they can ask the full legislature to extend the ban with a law.

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