Natural Resources Commission March 8, 2000
PO Box 30028
Lansing, MI 48909
Subject: Statewide QDM Fawn Buck Proposal
Good afternoon. My name is Boyd Wiltse and I thank you for giving me this opportunity to address the Commission.
- Majority of deer hunters are dissatisfied with poor buck/doe ratios and a lack of mature bucks.
- We agree with the DNR's objective and use of "antlerless licenses" to bring the deer population into better balance with habitat; however, we have concern that the current progress in meeting this objective may only be short-term, and many hunters may stop harvesting "does", especially if a more natural deer herd with better balance in sex ratios is not accomplished.
- We believe there's a need to emphasize both "bucks" and "does" in the deer hunting regulations. And that counting "fawn bucks" the same as a "legal antlered buck" has overwhelming hunter support, and will help protect young bucks, while acting as a great hunter educational aid.
In the interest of sound deer management, herd improvement, and hunter education, the Michigan Branches of the Quality Deer Management Association make the following proposal:
- Modify current deer hunting regulations by classifying any fawn buck (commonly referred to as a button buck) the same as a "legal antlered buck". They would no longer be classified as an "antlerless" deer.
- Hunter(s) would be required to use a buck tag for any fawn buck harvested.
- Hunter(s) harvesting a fawn buck and not having an unused buck tag would be required to immediately contact the DNR for further instructions. Alternate Option: Rather than contacting DNR, hunter(s) would be required to purchase a "special fawn buck license".
- No hunter penalties.
In addition to improving the deer herd structure, the above deer hunting regulation change would act as a great hunter educational aid, resulting in more careful identification of deer by hunters prior to shooting, and improved hunter satisfaction.
Boyd Wiltse, Secretary Mid-Michigan Branch QDMA
10365 Winding Valley Rd.
Brighton, MI 48116-8840
(810) 231-95690; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ; Website: http://www.qdma.net/