Wyoming Deer News

Fish and wildlife task force finishes early, waits for more information August 18, 2015 Wyoming, Casper Star-Tribune Online
... Task force members also suggested the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission, instead of the Wyoming Legislature, be given authority to raise or lower license fees for fish and game...

A scrap of white cloth is found to deter deer July 15, 2015 Wyoming, Jackson Hole News&Guide
...  reflectors covered with white bags [white cotton bags] are about 65 percent more effective than reflectors with the black bags ...  Apart from crossings — overpasses and underpasses — there’s nothing 65 percent effective out there.” ...  the best predictors of collisions:  Traffic volume and the speed limit were the most important factors relating to the nature of the road ...

Support preservation of mule deer July 15, 2015 Wyoming, Cody Enterprise 
... A decline of the state mule deer population from 544,000 to 350,000 between 2000 and 2013 is alarming.  Grizzly bears get more attention. Elk have more fans... But it is apparent no one wants to envision a Wyoming without mule deer...  females must give birth to 66 fawns per 100 adults to sustain herd levels... The birth rate fell short of 66 in nine of the last 13 years...

... Mule deer populations have been in decline over the last few decades in Wyoming and other western states. Recognizing the importance of trying to stop the population decline and to support mule deer herds the Wyoming Game and Fish Department launched the Mule Deer Initiative in 2007. ... The Commission approved funding of up to $500,000 in each of five new areas ...

Super Tag raffle raises $641k for Wyoming wildlife management July 7, 2015 Wyoming, KTVQ Billings News
...  the Super Tag program, separate raffles are held for bighorn sheep, moose, mountain goat, elk, wild bison, deer, antelope, black bear and mountain lion licenses... In 2015, a total of 50,485 raffle tickets were sold, an increase from last year...

What Really Happened In The Wyoming Big Game Draw? July 1, 2015 Wyoming, Eastmans' Official Blog - Eastmans' Hunting Journals
... the odds are getting tougher than ever before to draw a top quality big game tag. With a sheep herd that is on the wane, a moose herd that has been all but decimated ... an elk herd that has suffered one of the most drastic declines in modern history, a deer herd that has been on a steady downhill slide for more than 20 years ...

   Antelope, doe/fawn antelope, deer, doe/fawn deer, resident elk, and resident cow/calf elk available 

Largest mule deer study in state looks at fawns and predators June 17, 2015 Wyoming, Casper Star-Tribune Online
... Western Wyoming’s mule deer numbers continue to shrink... pregnancy rates are high, but fawn recruitment into the overall population is low. Most pregnant females in the Wyoming Range Herd deliver an average of two fawns each year, but the number of fawns alive three or four months later dropped by about half ...

Last year, Wyoming joined a number of other western states by offering a hunting license raffle for some of Wyoming’s tougher-to-draw licenses. In the process, the raffle raised over $667,000 for wildlife management. - June 16, 2015



Cody, Bullwinkle taken back to the wild June 16, 2015 Wyoming, Cody Enterprise 
... a juvenile yearling moose meandered into her yard... Game and Fish wardens soon arrived and decided the best way to deal with the bull was to tranquilize and relocate him ...

2 men fined for illegally killing buck mule deer in Wyoming June 3, 2015 Wyoming, blackhillsfox.com
...  Two Wisconsin men have to pay fines totaling more than $20,000 for using hunting licenses transferred to them illegally and killing three buck mule deer...

...  a 53-year-old Casper man was convicted of harassing elk after he repeatedly flew over a herd on his ultralight trike... a fine of $1,500, a one-year loss of hunting privileges, one year of jail time suspended, and one year of unsupervised probation..

FWP proposes keeping wolf rules the same May 15, 2015 Wyoming, The Bozeman Daily Chronicle
... at least 544 wolves in the state ... Lanier said reducing the Yellowstone quota would be appropriate because wolves aren’t as big a threat to elk herds as the spread of chronic wasting disease ...

Game and Fish meeting to review herd objectives May 9, 2015 Wyoming, Casper Journal
... The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is encouraging all interested individuals to attend a public meeting at 6 p.m. May 14 at the Casper Regional Game and Fish Office to provide comments and suggestions to proposed changes in the herd population objective and management strategy for the Rattlesnake Mule Deer and Pronghorn Herds (Deer Hunt Areas 88 and 89 and Antelope Hunt Areas 70-72) and the Bates Hole/Hat Six Mule Deer Herd (Deer Hunt Area 66), all west of Casper...

... Wildlife managers with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department invite the public to participate in the 22nd annual deer mortality surveys. The mortality surveys assess how this past winter has affected the Wyoming Range and Uinta mule deer herds of western Wyoming... The Cokeville area surveys were conducted Saturday, May 2. Volunteers will have another opportunity to assist with the surveys. The Leroy survey (east of Evanston) will take place Saturday, May 9. Volunteers will meet at 9 a.m. at the Leroy exit (Exit 24) off Interstate 80... For more information on the Leroy surveys contact Mountain View Wildlife Biologist Jeff Short at 307-782-6810.

... The agency is seeking input about the Baggs mule deer herd, the Baggs pronghorn antelope herd and the Bitter Creek pronghorn herd. [Meetings May 11 - 14]

... This is – or was – a landscape of rolling grassland, punctuated by rugged breaks where mule deer took shelter. But the undulations of the land have been leveled to get at the coal. By law, the coal companies are bound to “reclaim” the land when they’ve finished mining it. But Turner says that in practice, reclamation has been incomplete, at best....

Game & Fish Commission sets hunting season and quotas April 24, 2015 Wyoming, Douglas Budget
... Licenses for elk are down slightly this year ... Mule deer numbers are below objective ... in central Wyoming the commission reduced antelope hunting licenses slightly...

Wyoming Game and Fish needs your help April 21, 2015 Oil City
... Wildlife managers with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department invite the public to participate in the 22nd annual deer mortality surveys. The mortality surveys assess how this past winter has affected the Wyoming Range and Uinta mule deer herds of western Wyoming...

Research tracks Wyoming wildlife migrations April 15, 2015 Wyoming, Cody Enterprise
... “We’re learning more and more about how important these migrations are to our big game herds,” said Kauffman, head of the Wyoming Cooperative Fishgand Wildlife Research Unit at the University of Wyoming in Laramie.  There is growing public interest in protecting key migration routes ...

Game and Fish Commission to set hunting season and quotas April 22-23 April 15, 2015 Wyoming, Oil City
...  Setting hunting seasons and quotas for big game for the coming fall will be the focus of the April 22-23 Wyoming Game and Fish Commission meeting in Casper... A complete agenda can be found online at:wgfd.wyo.gov. ...

Sportsmen's group calls for drone ban in Wyoming April 9, 2015 Wyoming, Sioux City Journal
... Backcountry Hunters and Anglers wants the department to ban hunters from using drones to track and scout game.  “Believe it or not, people actually do use drones to scout and look for wildlife from the air...

The Wyoming Game & Fish recently returned to western Wyoming to assist in a study that is trying to determine what effects drought, habitat quality and development activity are having on mule deer numbers in that region. - April 6, 2015 Texas



WGFC gives to mule-deer ‘bottleneck’ fund April 2, 2015 Wyoming, pinedaleroundup.com 
... The Conservation Fund’s bankroll to buy private property near the Fremont Lake “bottleneck” that forces thousands of mule deer to migrate through single file is $250,000 richer, thanks to the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission (WGFC)...

Backcountry Hunters and Anglers: Ban drone use April 1, 2015 Wyoming, Wyoming Tribune
... Backcountry Hunters and Anglers wants the department to ban hunters from using drones to track and scout game... Drones violate the spirit of Wyoming's long tradition of "fair chase" hunting ...

Grant Teton National Park to drivers: look out for the elk, moose March 28, 2015 Wyoming, Salt Lake Tribune 
... Park officials say that with the receding snowpack, elk on the National Elk Refuge have begun to fan out across the sagebrush flats north of the Gros Ventre River... 

Daily Ranger
... The biggest proposed change is lifting antler-point restrictions in several general-license deer areas southeast of Lander...  according to Game and Fish data presented at the working group's meeting in December. With such a rule, hunters pound the older males and those animals' portion of the population shrinks...

Conservation bank eyed as solution to sage-grouse woes March 19, 2015 Wyoming, Summit County Citizens Voice
... The country’s first-ever sage grouse conservation bank will manage a vast expanse of central Wyoming for sage-grouse, mule deer and other wildlife as a hedge against impacts to greater sage-grouse in energy development zones...

... The range of the South Wind River Herd is essentially from a little north and west of Lander ...  estimated that the entire herd is 8,000 to 8,500 ...

Area 66 Mule Deer Working Group hosts public meeting March 15, 2015 Wyoming, oilcitywyo.com
... a public meeting on Thursday, Mar. 19 ... "The group has learned about the decline of mule deer across Wyoming and the western United States and now we are working with the Game and Fish to address some of these issues and concerns for this particular herd,” ...
 
Johnson County Winter Deer Survey Completed March 14, 2015 Wyoming, Basinsradio
... 3,973 mule deer were classified ... the fawn ratio averaged 88 fawns per 100 does compared to 57 fawns per 100 does in 2013. The average for the previous five years was 66:100... The buck ratio in 2014 averaged 40 bucks per 100 does, compared to 36 bucks per 100 does in 2013. The buck ratio averaged 37 bucks per 100 does over the previous five years...

...  Antler and shed hunting is prohibited on all public lands west of the Continental Divide outside of the Great Divide Basin until May 1. The effort is meant to protect wintering wildlife ...

... The Wyoming Game and Fish Department will conduct six open-house meetings throughout the Bighorn Basin and one final meeting in Cody to discuss 2015 hunting season proposals for game birds and big game...

New easement secured in southeastern Wyoming March 11, 2015 Wyoming, Casper Star-Tribune Online
... The Nature Conservancy has placed a conservation easement on 667 acres ...  vital habitat for elk, mule deer, and pronghorn ...

Tracking Mule Deer During Migration March 7, 2015 Montana, GPS tracking
... Using a technique developed by researchers in New Zealand, scientists shoot at the deer with nets while the pilot flies low to the ground. Once the deer is trapped in the net, a team member jumps out of the helicopter to wrestle the deer to the ground.  The deer are blindfolded and placed in slings which are then suspended on the helicopter, and eventually placed on canvas stretchers on the ground in a different location away from the rest of the herd ...

UW Researchers Plan Wildlife Captures in March March 2, 2015 Wyoming, University of Wyoming News
...  researchers with the UW-headquartered Wyoming Migration Initiative (WMI) and personnel from Game and Fish plan to live-tweet the approximately three weeks of research activity and provide Facebook posts about the animal captures multiple times a day...  All updates will use the hashtags #wyodeer, #wyomoose, #wyoelk and #wyosheep. Included in the tweets will be maps and data graphics from the forthcoming “Atlas of Wildlife Migration,” a partnership effort with the University of Oregon InfoGraphics Lab cartographers...WMI’s Facebook page is at www.facebook.com\migrationinitiative. Game and Fish is at www.facebook.com/WyoGFD. ... See the Tweets below for #wyodeer

Study providing info on mule deer habitat February 20, 2015 Wyoming, Billings Gazette
... The Wyoming Game and Fish Department has been collaring mule deer in the winter ranges near LaBarge, Kemmerer and Evanston with the goal to fit radio collars on 70 does to determine habitats preferred by the deer...



... the number of fawns per 100 does well above recent averages. Several herds had more than 80 fawns per 100 does. Research shows at least 66 fawns per 100 does are needed to support population growth... 

... the Wyoming Migration Initiative (WMI) ...  a cooperative trying to protect the state's big-game migratory routes from development, allowing the movement of these animals to continue as nature intended... The WMI now fits animals with GPS collars that can collect location data at time points ranging from every 15 minutes to an hour...

Mule deer study provides important information February 17, 2015 Wyoming,  WGFD News
... The Wyoming Game and Fish Department has been collaring mule deer in the winter ranges near LaBarge, Kemmerer and Evanston with the goal to fit radio collars on 70 does in these areas to determine habitats preferred by the deer... To date, wildlife managers have identified important migration corridors from critical winter ranges in the LaBarage area to summer ranges in the Greys River and Wyoming Range and Salt Ranges...

Studying Deer, and Migration, to Keep Herd Moving February 16, 2015 Wyoming, New Telegraph
... Migrations in the West follow what biologists call the “green wave” in the spring ... winter range in the Red Desert to spring and summer grounds in the Hoback River basin... the top challenge for protecting the route — a bottleneck near Fremont Lake. The Conservation Fund is in the process of buying the area involved for about $2 million, to protect it from development...

Game and Fish search for solutions to muley decline February 4, 2015 Wyoming, Buffalo Bulletin
... The problems the Upper Powder River herd, located around Kaycee, are facing, are mirrored across Wyoming and across the western states where mule deer live... Thiele’s research using population tallies and hunter and landowner surveys shows does are getting pregnant, but fawns are dying.  Fawn to does ratios are down by 20 percent since the 90s ...

CWD could migrate to Hole February 4, 2015 Wyoming, Jackson Hole News&Guide
... A whitetail deer that tested positive for chronic wasting disease, or CWD, outside of Meeteetse in November was shot less than 20 miles from winter range now occupied by Teton park mule deer... It’s unclear what efforts will be made to determine if Grand Teton park’s deer contract chronic wasting disease...

For Mule Deer, an Incredible Journey February 3, 2015 Wyoming, New York Times 
... the Red Desert-to-Hoback migration, which is as long as any known land migration in the lower 48 states, a twice-yearly, 150-mile journey that has inspired numerous conservation groups to work together to protect the deer’s route from development... “Migration is the underlying mechanism that allows this landscape to support the deer populations,” ...

'Like spokes on a wheel': Researchers map elk migrations in Greater Yellowstone January 27, 2015 Wyoming, Helena Independent Record
... The initiative’s study tracks nine major elk herds into Wyoming, Idaho and Montana. Migrations range from 30 to 90 miles, with the Northern and Cody herd's traveling the longest distances... “Another question we’re asking is whether we can use camera trapping placed along those migration bottlenecks to conduct these surveys,” ...

An unlikely conservation champion January 25, 2015 Wyoming, Casper Star-Tribune 
... John Eddins, who retired last month after a 27-year career with the Wyoming Department of Transportation ...On behalf of the hundreds of deer and antelope whose lives were directly saved by his actions, their many descendants, and the thousands of animals who will benefit from the surge of new wildlife crossing structures in Wyoming and neighboring states in the years to come, the Wyoming Migration Initiative thanks John Eddins for his contributions ...

... This meeting will be held on January 28, 2015 at the Harold Jarrard Park community building in Kaycee beginning at 6:00 pm...

... This survey will be conducted using a helicopter and will require about 60-65 hours of flight time ... This is a valuable piece of information to independently verify the population estimates Wyoming Game and Fish produces annually based on classification and harvest information...  in 2014 yearling buck/doe ratios were good ...

High Country News
... The Sublette Mule Deer Herd has seen a 20 percent decline, he says. But the portion that winters on the Pinedale Mesa has fared worse.  “The Pinedale Anticline has seen, at one point, a 50 percent decline,” he says. “It’s rebounded to a 40 percent decline.” ... Boiled down, research seeks to understand the relationship between nutrition, habitat and mule deer behavior, Dwinnell says... 

Research seeks reasons for demise of mule deer January 20, 2015 Wyoming, High Country News
...  “Mule deer are declining across Wyoming and the West.” ... Matt Kauffman, University of Wyoming professor of zoology and physiology, who with his crew, caught, wrangled and released 175 deer one week last December.  Wyoming Game and Fish Department strives for a population of 564,150 mule deer, but the last statewide estimate was 374,400 ...

... 17 co-defendants to be sentenced in this case, which has now brought over $30,000 in fines and restitution ... FWP investigators discovered over 30 illegally taken deer and elk ...

... On December 15, 2014, a father and son from Hudson and Riverton plead guilty in the Ninth District Circuit Court in Lander to the wanton destruction of two, two-point buck mule deer...

Muley Fanatic Foundation accepting funding proposals for 2015 January 14, 2015 Wyoming, SweetwaterNOW.com
...  The deadline for project submission is March 1, 2015. Any and all proposals for projects located in Southwest Wyoming that address the mission of the Muley Fanatic Foundation will be considered...

Northern Wyoming Mule Deer Migration January 8, 2015 Wyoming, Eastmans' Official Blog
...  in the Bridger Teton Wilderness north of Jackson...  In the early 70’s they had a large population of mule deer that summered throughout this country ... they traveled well over 100 miles, over the Continental Divide ... If they didn’t get over the top, it meant starvation ... There is speculation that too high of a harvest of the older mature bucks results in the younger bucks not learning how to migrate back to the Jackson Hole side...

Chronic deer disease marches closer to Yellowstone January 6, 2015 Wyoming, WyoFile
...  Wyoming Game and Fish identified seven new deer-hunt areas in 2014 where deer are infected with Chronic Wasting Disease, including one area within 40 miles of Yellowstone National Park.  The number is almost double the normal annual increase ...

Photographer follows big mammals into Yellowstone backcountry January 5, 2015 Wyoming, Ravalli Republic
... Using migrating elk data collected between 2000 and 2013 by state, federal and nonprofit researchers, Middleton assembled 2.7 million GPS locations from 271 individuals in eight herds to build a map.  “This database of GPS movements will facilitate comprehensive reporting on the migrations ... Cody elk that do migrate manage to trek 25 to 85 miles through steep, rocky drainages ...

Baggs Mule Deer Working Group meets Jan. 6 December 31, 2014 Wyoming, tsln.com 
... The Baggs Mule Deer Herd (BMDH) Working Group will hold their next meeting at 5:30 p.m. on January 6 at the Bureau of Land Management Office, located at 1300 N. Third Street in Rawlins ...

Deer rescued from icy waters December 31, 2014 Wyoming, Green River Star 
... residents reported seeing her fall through the ice...  The ice rescue team used a a number of ropes, along with special ice rescue suits and an inflatable device known as a nebulus to conduct their rescue...

UW Hires Excellence Chair in Conservation Economics December 28, 2014 Wyoming, County 10
... In 2013, the Knobloch Family Foundation contributed $2 million to the Haub School toward a conservation economics endowed chair... Dr. Albers’ research on the interactions of private and public resource manager/users in the production of ecosystem services will inform strategies for protecting landscapes in Wyoming and the West ...

... The recent discoveries put the disease as far west as Meeteetse and Lander... Wildlife managers and advocates are wary that the disease might infect elk west of the divide where many are concentrated on feedgrounds in the winter...

Lander Game and Fish Asks Dog Owners for Help December 24, 2014 Wyoming, Wyoming Public Media
... keep their dogs away from deer, moose and other large game. The county has seen an increase in dog and wildlife conflicts ...

Baggs mule deer population joins in statewide studies December 18, 2014 Wyoming, Rawlinstimes
... Mule deer are affected by a combination of many factors, including fire suppression, oil-gas-mineral mining, habitat fragmentation, spread of invasive plants, drought, competition between species, livestock management and Chronic Wasting Disease...

Game and Fish working to support sheep mountain mule deer December 20, 2014 Wyoming, Laramie Boomerang
... Statewide, mule deer populations have been in decline for years ... a public meeting Tuesday evening to discuss progress on the Sheep Mountain Mule Deer Initiative, a big-picture effort to increase the herd size ... disturbances such as controlled burns and aeration are tools land managers can use to improve habitat by promoting new growth ...

Wrong deer species costs Cheyenne man $4,010 December 19, 2014 Wyoming, tsln.com 
...  must pay $4,010 and lose his hunting privileges for two years for shooting a mule deer buck during a closed season... Rangitsch said he thought the deer was a white-tailed deer when he shot it...

Hunters are now welcome in one of Wyoming national park's private land December 13, 2014 Wyoming, Bio & Tech Insights
... According to Game and Fish spokesman Renny MacKay, the new rule affects the hunting of elk and bison on private lands...  the National Park Conservation Association said they disagree with the reinterpretation of the rule...


Wyoming data: In 2013 the state had an estimated 63,000 white-tails and 374,000 mule deer, 369,000 mule deer in 2012.  The harsh winter of 2014 reduced the herd.  A total population of about 578,000 in 1991. Mule deer populations in Wyoming have been on the decline since the late 1980s. According to the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies mule deer populations "declined by an estimated 168,000 (31 percent) since 2000. After the 2011 hunting seasons, it was estimated there were 376,000 mule deer in the state." Harsh winters in 1978-79, 1983-84 (resulting in a population crash), and 1992-93, reduced populations, also a severe outbreak of EHD in 2012 reduced white-tail populations.
     A three year study is underway as part of the Mule Deer Initiative to explore why mule deer are not reaching their population goals. Reasons include drought, development, chronic wasting disease, and poor fawn production which has declined by about 20 percent in the last 25 years. To sustain hunting the herd needs about 66 fawns per 100 does, but the ratio has been below that since 1990. In 2012 it was at 63. The state is about 35 percent below objective.
      Some deer migrate 170 miles in the Wyoming range. Over hunting on public land, habitat loss and fragmentation, and energy development are all thought to be contributing causes of the decline. Mule deer populations are generally in better shape on private land. Antelope populations have been on a steady decline over the last few years.  Hunting statistics
     Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) was first discovered in 1979 in deer at the Wyoming Fish and Game Department’s Sybille wildlife research facility.  The first recorded CWD infection in 1967 was among captive deer at a Colorado Division of Wildlife Research Facility in Fort Collins, Colorado.
     At least 544 wolves in 2015.

The Stop Poaching Tip Line is 877-WGFD-TIP.  Or report online.

Other useful links:
- Wyoming Mule Deer Plan  - 2014 Mule Deer Migration on Pinedale Anticline 
- MuleyFanatic.com Mule deer organization in southwestern Wyoming
Platte Valley Habitat Partnership's (PVHP) Mule Deer Habitat Plan April, 2013
- Citizens for the Wyoming Range    - BLM Mule Deer Habitat Program
- Wyoming Game and Fish Department    - Facebook page
Wyoming Migration InitiativeAdvancing the understanding, appreciation, and conservation of Wyoming's migratory ungulates by conducting innovative research and sharing scientific information through public outreach. 

Tweet on this timeline using hashtags #Wyoming #deer

Tweets about deer in Wyoming


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Platte Valley Mule Deer: The Wyoming Game and Fish Department has begun a discussion with the public on the future of the Platte Valley mule deer herd--one of the state's most treasured herds. The video below explains some of the issues facing these deer and how you can get involved.

Attitudes Toward Mule Deer Management in the Platte Valley This study was conducted for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department to determine mule deer hunters’ opinions on mule deer hunting and mule deer management in the Platte Valley

Mule Deer As habitat loss and fragmentation increase across ungulate ranges, identifying and prioritizing migration routes for land-use planning ... . This approach was applied to a migratory mule deer population in a pristine area of southwest Wyoming, where 2,000 gas wells and 1,609 km of pipelines and roads were proposed for development.

Herd Population Management: "Wherever possible, biologists establish an “objective” for each herd, a target population size that has been set in cooperation with landholders, hunters, and other interested members of the public. 




 

MFF pledges $1.3 million to deer research project. The laboratory will be in Southwest Wyoming. This will benefit surrounding states and many others. The mule deer populations are in a record decline. December 11, 2014