Assessing Deer Hunter Attitudes Toward Regulatory Change Using June 9, 2011 Minnesota

Assessing Deer Hunter Attitudes Toward Regulatory Change Using ... June 9, 2011 Minnesota Human Dimensions of Wildlife: An International Journal

State wildlife agencies are charged with managing wildlife populations of harvestable species. Opinions regarding how species should be managed differ dramatically and decisions are often made without comprehensive data. There is interest among deer hunters in Minnesota to change harvest regulations that benefit mature bucks. Beginning in 2005, research focused on the biological and social implications of changing deer regulations. We used data collected via random surveys, public input meetings, and an Internet survey to assist with the decision-making process. We observed demographic differences among respondents for the three data collection methods; however, the attitudinal differences were “minimal” (i.e., Cramr's V ≈ .1). We believe that a structured public input process, even if self-selected, can help inform decision-makers. Agencies that use public input meetings should reevaluate their public input process to include an Internet component if there are adequate baseline data available to make comparisons

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