Public response to a proposal to re-align a handful of deer permit areas in Northeastern Minnesota has prompted the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to wait to implement the changes in 2017.
“We remain committed to the boundary changes, which benefit both deer and moose,” Adam Murkowski, DNR big game program leader, said in a statement. “However, it is important that we take the time needed to do more outreach with the public about the proposal, the specific changes being proposed, and what the proposal means for deer and moose.”
He added that the DNR does not want to implement any changes until after completion of an ongoing evaluation of the state’s deer management program by the Office of the Legislative Auditor.
The DNR made the proposal to change some deer permit area boundaries earlier this year and asked for public comment about it. Originally, the agency intended to make the boundary changes this fall. However, comments on the proposal showed that the information presented did not clearly explain the reasons for the proposed changes, implications for deer populations and potential health benefits for moose, Murkowski said.
“We could have been clearer about the reasons behind the proposal, and the additional time prior to implementation will allow us to better address concerns and questions,” Murkowski said.