Cook County is included in the preliminary details of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources upcoming 2015 deer population goal-setting process now available on the DNRs website.
Working with citizens to achieve conservation and management goals is integral to the mission of the DNR, said Leslie McInenly, DNR big game program leader. To make sure that goals are based on the broad range of public interest in deer, we use a public process to help determine how many deer to manage for in a given area.
Deer population goals will be set for 40 of Minnesotas 128 deer permit areas during the upcoming process, which formally kicks off in October when nominations open for advisory team members and concludes in May 2015 with the announcement of final goals.
Large portions of northeastern, north-central and east-central Minnesota will be affected, including Cook County, which is in Area 1 (Superior Uplands Arrowhead, which is comprised of permit areas 117, 122, 126, 127, 180).
There will be opportunities for broad public input through public meetings as well as online and written questionnaires prior to convening a citizen advisory team for each area. The DNR also is collecting representative data on public desires using hunter and landowner mail surveys administered by the University of Minnesota.
The public participation process has been designed to include input from anyone who has an interest in deer management, McInenly said. Citizen team members also will be selected to represent the range of public interests, including hunting, wildlife viewing, natural resource management and local business interests.
This is the third year the DNR has worked with citizens to reassess and re-establish deer population goals in Minnesota.
For more details, visit the DNRs website: www.dnr.state.mn.us