About 30 people turned out to hear Dave Schad, director of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Fish and Wildlife Division, at the meeting of the Duluth chapter of the Izaak Walton League. He had been invited to speak about the roles of science and social issues in setting fishing and hunting rules in the state.
Schad repeated and expanded upon some of the things he said in a Question-and-Answer piece in the Duluth News Tribune’s Outdoors section on March 30. (Go to www.duluthnewstribune.com and click on Local Outdoors.)
Afterward, Schad fielded questions on a wide range of topics, including the state’s response to a law suit over the incidental trapping of the federally endangered Canada lynx. A federal judge has directed the state to modify its trapping regulations to prevent the accidental trapping of lynx. Schad couldn’t be specific about what the state will propose, but the answer will come soon. The state has until April 30 to respond to the judge. The News Tribune will follow the issue and report details as they are available.
Other questions touched on the ruffed grouse population (why last fall’s hunting was perceived as poorer than spring drumming counts would have indicated), Minnesota’s decling moose population, deer feeding, the deer population, spotted knapweed (an invasive species) and the prospects for a constitutional amendment question on dedicated fish and game funding in this fall’s election.