Michigan Deer News
Michigan bill makes it easier to legally eat roadkill April 4, 2014 MSN Autos (blog)
... under a recent so-called roadkill bill introduced in the Michigan Legislature, drivers could at least make the best of a bad situation by legally claiming roadkill and, as the Detroit News says, turn it “into fast food or a pronto pelt.” ... 

Natural Resources Commission Meeting March 28, 2014 Michigan, MDNR News 
   The agenda for the April 10, 2014, Natural Resources Commission meeting has been posted to the Natural Resources Commission website at www.michigan.gov/nrc and can be accessed by clicking this link (includes Elk regulations).   Please note the April 10 meeting will be held at the MSU Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health, 4125 Beaumont Road, Lansing, Michigan.

     The Department of Natural Resources today announced that, starting April 1, the application period will open for the new Deer Private Land Assistance Network (Deer PLAN) grant program. The Deer PLAN, funded by the Fish and Game Fund, is designed to support private-land deer habitat improvement projects in the northern Lower Peninsula.  "There are two primary goals applicants should strive to meet," said DNR wildlife biologist Brian Piccolo. "The projects should produce tangible deer habitat improvements and build long-term partnerships between the DNR and sportsmen's clubs."  For 2014, $50,000 will be available, focused on the following counties: Alcona, Alpena, Crawford, Montmorency, Oscoda and Presque Isle....

Potential high-risk TB areas for deer established March 26, 2014 Michigan, farmersadvance.com 
... the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) confirmed one bovine TB positive free-ranging white-tailed deer in Presque Isle County, and another in northwestern Montmorency County... For more information visit the Michigan DNR Emerging Diseases page ...

Debate continues for antler point restrictions during deer season March 22, 2014 Michigan, Battle Creek Enquirer
 ...  let’s shelve all APRs and go back to the one-buck limit for all deer seasons. It will protect young bucks and let more hunters enjoy harvesting a buck – not just those who are fortunate enough to have one with a certain number of points walk by...

Brooklyn Park City Council OKs hunt to cull deer herd March 2, 2014 Minnesota, Minneapolis Star Tribune
... n 2001, the council adopted a deer management plan to reduce the deer population to a range that the natural habitat can support, which is 15 to 20 deer per square mile of natural habitat. [a recent U.S. Forest Service Study puts the optimal deer density at 15 to 28 deer per square mile]

Two deer test positive for bovine TB March 18, 2014 Michigan, Alpena News
... The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development named two potential high-risk areas after two deer shot in Montmorency and Presque Isle counties tested positive for bovine tuberculosis....

2013 Antler Point Restrictions Survey:  North-Central Lower Peninsula [PDF] March, 2014 Michigan, BJ Frawley - MDNR
     A survey was completed to determine whether hunters supported proposed mandatory Antler Point Restrictions (APR) in the north-central Lower Peninsula. A key feature of the proposed mandatory regulations was changing the definition of a buck to a deer with three or more points on one antler. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) supports the voluntary implementation of APR practices on private land in Michigan. Mandatory APR are implemented by regulation only when a clear majority (>66%) of hunters support implementation. Questionnaires were sent to a random sample of hunters; 72% of hunters returned their questionnaire. About 62% of the people hunting deer in the north-central Lower Peninsula supported implementing 
mandatory APR regulations. Support from hunters was insufficient to recommend 
implementation of antler point restrictions in the north-central Lower Peninsula. 

Harsh winter's impact to linger in Michigan March 16, 2014 USA Today 
...  near-record snowfall ... second-most days below zero in a winter ever in the Flint area ... A deer die-off is expected in the Upper and northern Lower peninsulas ... "Our Forest Resources Division has reached out to timber jobbers to leave tree tops on the ground or leave their cut-down trees on the ground for a day or so, so the deer can nibble on them," ...

Sustaining the Deer Population March 14, 2014 Michigan, Upper Michigans Source 
...  A mix of cold weather and fewer areas for deer to feed have led to a decline in the deer population around Grand Marais.  In an effort to curb the decline, the Grand Marais Sportsmen Club has started a feeding program ...

Deer Antler Rules: Divided We Fall  March 14, 2014 Michigan, Deer & Deer Hunting
... Last fall, Michigan enacted mandatory antler rules in 12 counties. In short, hunters are required to pass up any buck that does not have more than 3 points on one side of its rack. According to Smith’s research, more than 100 hunters were ticketed last year for shooting sublegal bucks...

Natural Resources Commission to meet Thursday in Roscommon March 10, 2014 Michigan, MDNR News
... The Michigan Natural Resources Commission (NRC) will hold its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, March 13, at the Ralph A. MacMullan Conference Center, 104 Conservation Drive, in Roscommon... At 1 p.m., the Policy Committee on Wildlife and Fisheries will receive updates from Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Fisheries and Wildlife divisions; discuss elk regulations and quotas and bear quotas; receive an update on bovine tuberculosis surveillance; and learn the results of the Southern Lower Peninsula antler point restriction survey... For more information about the Natural Resources Commission, including full agendas and meeting minutes, visit www.michigan.gov/nrc.

Grosse Ile, Deer culling causes confusion March 9, 2014 Michigan, The News-Herald
...The man told the officer that he saw the deer in the woods ... it had been standing with blood coming off its head and face and that he believed it had been shot by a member of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources deer culling group... A member of the culling group later confirmed to a Grosse Ile police officer that they shot the deer and left it there to die. When they returned to the site, the deer was gone ...

Follow the rules for feeding deer March 5, 2014 Michigan, Midland Daily News
... the Michigan Department of Natural Resources ... allows what it calls “recreational feeding” ...“Feed should consist only of grains, second cut alfalfa and clover, and pelletized food materials containing no animal protein,” ... the DNR recommends corn be mixed as a minor component (25 percent or less) ...

... Results from the 2014 winter survey provided an elk herd estimate of 668 animals.  This reflects a reduction of the population size that had previously exceeded the population goal rane to now fall within the desired range of 500 to 900 animals.  Acounting for this reduced number of animals and the potential effects of the current severe winter on future population growth rates will require a reduction of elk license quotas.  The Department proposes establishing elk license quotas of 100 per year for the 2014 and 2015 season. ...

Holland Township, Game farm proposed for Holland Township raises concerns March 4, 2014 Michigan, MLive 
... asking township officials to approve a special land use for the 20-acre property ...  residents favoring the project saying it would provide opportunities to teach young people about hunting and wildlife and keep the area natural. Opponents expressed concern about stray bullets striking residences or people, as well as noise from the gunfire...

... The man came to the deer's rescue and somehow pulled him from the river. When an HSHV worker arrived, the man was lying on top of the frozen deer trying to warm him up ... hypothermia ...

Long winter for EUP deer February 27, 2014 Michigan, SooEveningNews.com
... deer are having a difficult time in our region moving around and finding food... Supplemental feeding, for private parties who have obtained the proper permits, has been helping in certain areas where deer gather to spend the winter season... the number of animals who fail to make it could be substantial ...

Royal Oak, Deer make surprise return to Tenhave Woods February 25, 2014 Michigan, Observer & Eccentric Newspapers 
... The urban deer that the Royal Oak Nature Society thought it locked out of Tenhave Woods in February 2012 have found its way back inside the thought-to-be-secure park in Royal Oak... in the summer of 2012 when more than 15 deer were spotted in the park...

State hunting license changes to take effect March 1 February 22, 2014 Michigan, The Detroit News 
... all hunters will be required to have a base license ... $11 ... Licenses for other species will have to be purchased separately ...  $20 for deer and $100 for wolves ... Under the old price structure ... deer licenses $15 ...

Hunters – important license changes coming soon February 21, 2014 Michigan, MDNR News
... Deer hunters now have three license options to harvest antlered deer:  A single deer license, which replaces the separate firearm and archery season licenses of previous years. The single deer license is valid for archery, firearm and muzzleloader seasons. With this choice, you will NOT be able to purchase a second deer license, but you will be able to purchase antlerless deer licenses where available.  
     The deer combo license, which includes two deer licenses, one regular and one restricted, as in previous years. Both licenses are valid for archery, firearm and muzzleloader seasons. Antler point restrictions apply based on the area of the state where you hunt. 
     The hunt/fish combo license, which includes the regular and restricted deer combo licenses, a base license and an all-species fishing license.

Harsh winter taking a toll on Michigan wildlife February 14, 2014 Michigan Radio
... State wildlife officials say the next few weeks will be critical for Michigan deer, pheasants, and other animals...

... . In the summer, the deer’s reddish-brown coat is made up of dense or solid hair follicles. In the fall, he’ll shed that coat and sprout a thicker, darker one... it’s not thicker because he grows more hair — it’s thicker because each individual follicle of hair is hollow. The air trapped inside of each of the hairs enables him to retain heat... instead of melting, the snow piles up on his back. That’s his coat at work...

... Deep snow and frigid temperatures haven't bothered Southwest Michigan's deer herd, in part because so many were killed in a 2012 outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease, or EHD... As a result of less competition, deer entered the winter season in very good shape ...

More deer hunting changes may happen February 3, 2014 Michigan, Greenville Daily News
... northern Lower Peninsula hunters will not be able to shoot a first deer with less than three antler points on a side, and a second deer would need four points on a side. Further, southern Michigan hunters could not shoot a buck unless it had at least four antler points on a side...

Wildlife struggles in brutal winter weather January 30, 2014 Michigan, Daily Tribune
... According to Russ Mason, chief of the wildlife division for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the difficult conditions may kill some animals now, but the real test will be about six weeks from now as the state starts to move out of its seasonal deep freeze...

... The Dubaults, who appeared at the meeting, said ... deer have destroyed landscaping, broken tree branches and poked holes into an expensive pool cover...  Grand Haven ... culled their deer population in 2009 for about $10,000. Many council members wondered if the action actually had helped the North Ottawa municipality. In 2013, Grand Haven began exploring birth control for does through collaborating with the Humane Society of the United States...

... If adopted, NLP hunters would be prohibited from shooting a first deer with fewer than three antler points on a side. A second buck would have to have four points on a side, which is already required. Southern Michigan hunters would only be able to shoot deer with four points, or more, on a side... Approval requires a 50 percent participation rate and 66 percent approval by hunters...

Deer herd could be affected by severe cold January 24, 2014 Michigan, Alpena News
... the deer that are most at risk are fawns that were just born last year... they have a more difficult navigating through deep snow than full grown deer and can't reach as high to reach food on low lying branches on trees. She said there was a good harvest of acorns, but it could be difficult for the deer to locate than in the snow... By planting cedar you help them with food and shelter, but you can also plant food plots with produce that is high in calories ...

Winter not looking good for U.P. deer January 24, 2014 Michigan, Mining Journal 
... During the winter of 2012-13, though, the weather didn't break early and severe weather lasted well into April. This scenario took its toll on the deer herd, including being deadly to younger deer and causing a poor fawn crop.  This was very evident to deer hunters last fall, most of whom reported seeing fewer deer...

Group sets sights on EUP deer herd January 13, 2014 Michigan, Sault Ste. Marie Evening News
... "We are changing deer hunting in our state forever," said Regional Director Bob Ducharme of the Quality Deer Management Association ... "If we want older deer — better bucks — we've got to pass on the young bucks and let them grow." ...

During a Night Ride near Amasa in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan, a small deer shot out in front of me and there was nothing I could do. - January 14, 2014



Exeland club calls for major changes in deer management January 12, 2014 Michigan, Sawyer County Record
...  Our deer herd is decreasing at an alarming rate and nothing has been done about it.” ...  members questioned the DNR’s use of the SAK system, a method used each year to determine the deer herd size. Club members feel the SAK is off by 30 to 40 percent in overestimating how many deer actually exist ...

DNR allows supplemental deer feeding in southern U.P. January 11, 2014 MIchigan, Daily News 
... Due to heavy accumulated snowfall, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources will allow supplemental feeding of deer  ...  Feed can consist only of grains, second cut alfalfa and clover, and pelletized food materials containing no animal protein. The feed must be scattered on the ground at a depth not to exceed three inches. If individuals choose to feed corn, the DNR recommends it be mixed as a minor component (25 percent or less) of the recipe, which should help protect deer from dying by acidosis...

Jackson, Decision to kill deer and coyotes is wrong January 7, 2014 Michigan, MLive.com
... The Jackson City Council unanimously (one member was absent) approved the killing of these animals - they are considered a nuisance....  Killing is an immoral and unethical approach to a minor issue — leave the animals alone and nature will adjust the balance...

Penalties for poaching upped January 5, 2014 Michigan, Petoskeynews.com 
... the act adds an additional $1,000 restitution fee for illegally killing an antlered deer.  Restitution is even higher if the buck has at least 8 points — $500 per point — and $750 per point if it has at least 11 points...

... Michigan’s first wolf hunt harvested only 22 of the targeted goal of 43 wolves ... Keep Michigan Wolves Protected collected more than 250,000 signatures statewide to ask voters next November whether wolves should be a game species. But a bill ... effectively thwarted the referendum, putting the game species designation in the hands of the appointed Natural Resources Commission...

New law targets 'trophy' deer poachers December 30, 2013 Michigan,  Petoskey News-Review
... the act adds an additional $1,000 restitution fee for illegally killing an antlered deer.
Restitution is even higher if the buck has at least 8 points — $500 per point — and $750 per point if it has at least 11 points...

... The deer ...  couldn’t muster the strength to stand after slipping on the ice repeatedly... able to push the deer off the ice to the shoreline using the pole... the deer may have been hit by a car because of a flesh injury on its right hip... 

Deer and squirrels on Christmas morning - Michigan



... The incorporation of fire in land management in the northern Lake States was initially 
met with great resistance. Although fire was an element that was used effectively by Native Americans to manage forests (Cleland, 1992) and blueberry (Vaccinium) crops (Anderton, 1999), to European settlers it was an element that had to be extinguished; it posed a threat to their timber and communities. Over time, however, fire became a tool that was used effectively to promote game species such as white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virgianus) ...

What is the risk of the introduction of bovine TB to an area? December 18, 2013 Michigan, CattleNetwork.com
... The likelihood of introduction of the disease into cattle herds in a county is calculated as the mean number of possible contacts between cattle herds and infected deer or purchased herd additions... Once a producer knows the areas of his or her operation that are high risk, then he or she should develop a mitigation plan to reduce the risk by changing the accessibility of the feed or water to deer. ...

... Jackson City Council members are expected to rubberstamp the annual deer cull in Ella Sharp Park this week... Eric Terrian said in a memo to city officials the deer harvest is a result of deer population continuing to grow ... About 460 deer have been killed during the last six culls ... This will be the seventh annual deer cull ...

Elk harvest above average as season nears end December 14, 2013 Michigan, Cheboygan Daily Tribune
... 86 elk have been taken so far this season ... Approximately 30,000-to-40,000 hunters apply for a chance to hunt elk each year, and 150-to-400 permits are issued ... Michigan's native elk disappeared around 1875. Today's herd dates back to 1918, when seven animals were released near Wolverine... The current goal is a winter herd of 800-to-900 elk...

Will deer harvest numbers continue decline? December 9, 2013 Michigan,  Escanaba Daily Press 
... Brian Roell, a DNR wildlife biologist ... said the lower harvest "really is a direct effect of last year's winter and how long it lasted into the spring." ...  if we do end up with another hard winter ... further downturn in our deer herd in the Upper Peninsula." ...  the Farmers Almanac ... has predicted "biting cold and snowy" ...

Preliminary deer season results indicate drop in harvest/Inside the DNR December 6, 2013 Michigan, Daily Mining Gazette 
... DNR wildlife biologists had predicted before the season began that hunters would notice a marked decrease in the number of yearling bucks (typically spikes and forks) on the landscape this year, since many of last year's fawn crop were expected to have not survived the severe late winter... in an average year about 40 percent of the U.P. deer harvest is yearling bucks ...

DNR: Firearm deer hunters faced challenges December 6, 2013 Michigan, UpNorthLive.com
...[harvest] estimates are replaced by a rigorous assessment of harvest and participation over all deer seasons using an annual hunter mail survey... Rudolph stressed the importance of cooperation with Michigan’s hunter harvest survey, which he called “a vital tool for Michigan’s deer program ... Hunters that do not receive a survey in the mail but wish to provide their hunting and harvest information may visit www.michigan.gov/deer and select the Deer Harvest Reporting Form link ...

U.P. deer hunting not over just yet December 6, 2013 Michigan, Mining Journal
... At the Mackinac Bridge ... hunters tallied 4,207 deer this season, which compares to 6,420 during the 2012 firearm season.  That 34 percent drop is a bit higher than what Michigan Department of Natural Resources officials are estimating, with about a 25 percent reduction in the harvest being observed across the U.P...

Deer season success? Me neither December 5, 2013 Michigan, Port Huron Times-Herald 
... I and other hunters in southern Michigan noticed:.. The DNR’s preliminary estimate has the southern Lower Peninsula deer harvest down around 10 percent... I think the bizarre weather the first week or so of the firearm hunt had a lot to do with it, especially the hurricane opening weekend. ..

Deer kill down in 2013 because of snow, disease December 5, 2013 Miichigan, Detroit Free Press
... the drop was about 15 to 20 percent in the Upper Peninsula and about 10 percent in the southern Lower Peninsula, with a slight decline in the northern Lower Peninsula...

Numbers appear slightly down from last year for harvested deer December 4, 2013 Michigan, Cadillac News 
... initial reports from across the state are suggesting that the harvest was lower this year compared to last year... About 325,000 hunters were expected to take to the woods for bow season, compared to the 575,000 hunters who were expected to hunt during firearm season...

Roscommon Mi Deer - December 4, 2013



Fewer deer for hunting season December 3, 2013 Michigan, Alpena News
... the number of deer coming into local check stations is down. In Alpena County, 810 were checked as of Monday, according to preliminary figures. Compare that to 936 from the same point in 2012, and an average of 887 from 2010-12... license sales were up about 1.8 percent from last year as of Monday ... nine deer potentially infected with bovine tuberculosis ...

Harvest down this deer season December 3, 2013 Michigan, Escanaba Daily Press 
... "Based on our main stations, it looks like we are down in the neighborhood of 25 percent n the Upper Peninsula," said Dave Jentoft, DNR wildlife biologist ... A factor which affects hunting each season is the weather ...

GT County deer harvest down December 3, 2013 Michigan, Traverse City Record-Eagle 
... the Michigan Department of Natural Resources says hunters in Grand Traverse County alone reported 42 percent fewer deer killed this year compared to last year. ...  The DNR has seen a similar drop in deer kills voluntarily reported to state officials across all 13 counties where the antler point restriction is in place... 

Mackinac Bridge count down 34 percent from 2012 November 2, 2013 Michigan, Sault Ste. Marie Evening News
... The Mackinac Bridge Authority recorded 4,207 deer as of 11 p.m. Sunday for 2013. In 2012, hunters returned home across the 5-mile span with 6,420 deer in tow as of 11 p.m. on Dec. 1, according to official calculations, representing a 34 percent decrease from 2012 to 2013... the long-lasting winter had taken a toll on the 1 1/2-year-old animals which make up a substantial portion of the annual harvest...

Michigan firearm deer season ends November 30, 2013 November 30, 2013 ABC 10 News NOW
... Lower Peninsula hunters drove home with 4,133 U.P. deer this year. That’s a 33% decline from a year ago ...

Deer check stations November 28, 2013 Michigan,  burtonview.mihomepaper.com 
... In 1972, the DNR decided to provide patches to deer hunters as an incentive to bring their deer in to DNR offices and roadside check stations... provides the much-needed data that helps DNR biologists manage huntable species in Michigan...

Michigan reindeer farm gets busy November 27, 2013 Royal Oak Daily Tribune
... reindeer at Rooftop Landing in northern Isabella County ... Aldrich and his son, Dan, have been busy of late, taking reindeer including Noel, her daughter Joy, granddaughter Clarice and others in the herd to events at malls, schools and other places...Rooftop Landing reindeer are booked for 105 events during the holiday season ... Live Reindeer Cam

Law stiffens fines for illegal killing of deer  November 26, 2013 Michigan,  ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed a law stiffening penalties for illegally killing or selling antlered white-tailed deer... 

Slower deer season seen by DNR November 25, 2013 Michigan,  Escanaba Daily Press
... "We had a high harvest last year and a rough winter. I'm not surprised the numbers are down," said Richardson...  Antler growth has been healthy but smaller than the 2012 firearm season due in part to a lack of nutrition for deer last year ...

Under the gun: whitetail deer struggle for survival November 25, 2013 Michigan, UpperMichiganSource.com
... Brain Roell said, “The extended winter into our typical spring was very difficult for the deer in the high snowfall regions. So we know we did loose deer to starvation and winter stress. But it also affected the adult does that actually did survive the winter which resulted in lower birth-weights of those fawns, which in turn goes right into the survival of those fawns...

Why venison isn't found in more Michigan restaurants November 25, 2013 Michigan Business Review - MLive.com
... The in-state domestic meat supply has dwindled as the number of game ranches has declined over the past decade. After hitting a peak at more than 800 in 2003, the Department of National Resources now licenses only 394 such facilities in Michigan.  The increasing price of grain, corn and other feed crops coupled with stricter regulations on fence height and fee increases in the early 2000s ...

Trooper shoots stunned deer in head after it refuses to move out of his way November 21, 2013 Michigan, New York Daily News
... After the animal gets stuck in the Michigan State Police officer's cruiser headlights, he is seen trying to nudge it out of the way. When that doesn't work, though, he takes out his pistol and shoots it point blank. 




Search for news and information by keyword above or find links to state news stories organized by topic.

Michigan population data: A significant population decline in 2013 following the harsh winter of 2012-13., most severe in the Upper Peninsula.  About 1.8 million deer in 2012, up from about 1.7 million deer in 2011, not counting urban deer. In the 1990's the state had about two million deer.  Last official estimate was 1.73 million for 2011.  
    An estimated 668 elk based on the 2014 winter survey.  Target range is 500 to 900.  Michigan restarted its elk population with just seven animals in 1918 after the herd was hunted to extinction in the 1800's.  Elk and deer have different diets during the spring, summer and fall. 

Other useful links:
Information about deer management, and links to additional resources such as a list of deer check stations. www.michigan.gov/deer 
For information on Chronic Wasting Disease: 
Michigan Deer Crash Collisions - Transportation Information
- Database of Deer-Vehicle Collisions from 2008 to 2012
Deer News and Information from the DNR and MSU
Michigan Deer Information and History, DNR
Michigan Whitetail Deer Information Site from the DNR and MSU

Tweet on this timeline using #Michigan #Deer

Tweets about Deer in Michgan


Tweets about MIchigan Wildlife

Tweets about Wildlife from DNR


DNR News Releases



Michigan Deer Management Plan: to maintain a healthy whitetailed deer population, using sound scientific management, maximizing recreational opportunities while minimizing negative impacts on ecosystems and other wildlife species and without creating undue hardship to private interests."

Michigan Deer Harvest Survey Results  Double click chart below for larger image

DNR - Regional Deer Advisory Teams - State of MichiganDepartment of Natural Resources January 24, 2012, Information about the DNRE's Regional Deer Advisory Teams.
With the adoption of the Michigan Deer Management Plan on May 6, 2010, the Department of Natural Resources and Environment committed to establishing a Regional Deer Advisory Team (RDAT) for each ecologically-based region of Michigan. Each RDAT will correspond to the boundaries of the DNR hunting and trapping zones,

Michigan United Conservation Club, June 26, 2011, provides detailed information about Michigan deer hunting in their recently released document, The debate about changing the firearm deer season opener [PDF].

UPWhitetails.com purpose shall be to instruct the public on the practices of sound deer management.

Ghost of the forest, albino deer in Michigan - May, 2013