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Wisconsin DNR looking to suspend “antlerless” deer hunts…but why?

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MADISON (AP) — Wisconsin wildlife officials want to suspend antlerless deer hunts in the state’s northern third to help the herd recover from two harsh winters.

The Wisconsin State Journal reports that Department of Natural Resources officials say nearly 40 percent of juvenile deer the agency was tracking with radio collars in northern Wisconsin have died since Jan. 1. That’s up from 33 percent in 2013 and 6 percent in 2012

DNR big game ecologist Kevin Wallenfang says the recommendation to suspend antlerless hunts would cover firearms and archery seasons over most of the 17-county northern forest zone. Youth, disabled, military personnel on leave and tribal members would still be able to hunter antlerless deer, however.

The DNR’s board plans to take up the recommendation May 28.