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Natural Resources Commission to Open Discussion on Lower Peninsula Deer Baiting and Feeding Ban


March 01, 2011
The NRC will begin a series of public discussions of the deer baiting and feeding ban in the state's Lower Peninsula at its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, March 10. The meeting will take place in Rooms 124 and 124A at the Lansing Community College M-Tech West Campus, located at 5708 Cornerstone Dr. in Lansing.

The public discussion session will take place from 10 a.m. to noon as a part of the NRC's regular monthly meeting. The NRC made an informal commitment to review the baiting and feeding ban after allowing the Department of Natural Resources three years to test and monitor for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) following the detection of a CWD-positive deer in a privately-owned cervid facility in Kent County in 2008.

Once the DNR had the diagnosis confirmed by the National Veterinarian Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa, it implemented the protocols of the state's Emergency Response Plan for Chronic Wasting Disease. Among the protocols was an immediate ban on deer baiting and feeding in the affected peninsula.

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"In 2008 when the NRC voted to make the baiting ban permanent in the Lower Peninsula, they said they would revisit the issue in three years allowing the Department to test several thousands of deer for CWD," said NRC Chair Tim Nichols of Fowlerville. "The result of these public discussions will be an NRC decision on whether to continue, lift or modify the deer baiting and feeding ban."

The public discussion sessions will be held at a series of NRC meetings, with a decision by the NRC prior to the publication of the 2011 DNR Hunting Guide.

NRC Commissioner John Madigan of Munising, who chairs the NRC's Policy Committee on Fish and Wildlife, will lead the discussion. A presentation will be made regarding deer baiting and feeding regulations in other states. At future meetings, the commission will review both scientific and social data regarding baiting and feeding of deer.

Persons attending the public discussion meeting will have an opportunity to provide public comment and can register at the meeting location to do so. Comments will be subject to time limits to be determined at the meeting based on the number of people who sign up for the opportunity to give public comment. Persons giving public comment are encouraged to provide written copies of their comments to DNR staff at the meeting location.

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Persons unable to attend the upcoming NRC meetings may submit written comments to the DNR on the deer baiting and feeding ban by sending an email to deerbaiting@michigan.gov.

For more information about the NRC, including meeting agenda, informational memos and past meeting meetings, go to www.michigan.gov/nrc.

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