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New deer-hunting rules to limit the spread of chronic wasting disease have been approved by Michigan Natural Resources Commission, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

The regulations include new restrictions on baiting and feeding.

The rules, which will go into effect for the 2018 deer-hunting session, were adopted after months of collecting comment from stakeholders, the DNR press release said.

Ranking Michigan's 25 best regions for deer-hunting
Ranking Michigan's 25 best regions for deer-hunting

This slideshow looks at Michigan's top 25 regions for deer hunting in 2015 based on state data for its 86 Deer Management Units.


CWD is a fatal neurological disease found in deer, elk and moose. There is no cure. It's unclear whether the disease can be transmitted to humans, and as a precaution, hunters are advised against meat from animals with CWD lesions. The biggest worry now with CWD is the long-term health of the state's deer population.

The disease first was discovered in Michigan in a free-ranging deer in May 2015. More than 31,000 deer in Michigan have been tested since for CWD, and 60 cases have been confirmed in six Michigan counties: Clinton, Ingham, Ionia, Jackson, Kent and Montcalm.

The new regulations:

Reduced the 4-point on-a-side antler requirement on the restricted tag of the combination license in the 16-county CWD Management Zone. Under the new regulation, a hunter in the CWD Management Zone can use the restricted tag of the combination license to harvest a buck with antlers as long as it has at least one 3-inch antler.
Created a discounted antlerless license opportunity in the CWD Management Zone on private land; if purchased, the license will expire Nov. 4, 2018.
Effective immediately, a statewide ban on the use of all natural cervid urine-based lures and attractants except for lures approved by the Archery Trade Association.
An immediate ban on baiting and feeding in the 16-county area identified as the CWD Management Zone. This area includes Calhoun, Clinton, Eaton, Gratiot, Hillsdale, Ingham, Ionia, Isabella, Jackson, Kent, Mecosta, Montcalm, Muskegon, Newaygo, Ottawa and Shiawassee counties.
A ban on baiting and feeding in the Lower Peninsula, effective Jan. 31, 2019, with an exception to this ban for hunters with disabilities who meet specific requirements. The start date on this regulation is intended to allow bait producers and retailers time to adjust to the new rule.
Effective immediately in the CWD Management Zone and four-county bovine tuberculosis area (in Alcona, Alpena, Montmorency and Oscoda counties), hunters with disabilities who meet specific requirements can now use 2 gallons of single-bite bait, such as shelled corn, during the Liberty and Independence hunts.
Allowance of all legal firearms to be used in muzzleloader season in the CWD Management Zone.
A purchase limit of 10 private-land antlerless licenses per hunter in the CWD Management Zone.
Restrictions on deer carcass movement in the five-county CWD Core Area (Ionia, Kent, Mecosta, Montcalm and Newaygo counties) and the CWD Management Zone.
Antlerless options on deer licenses/combo licenses during firearms seasons in the five-county CWD Core Area.
Expansion of early and late antlerless seasons in select counties.
Changes to regulations regarding wildlife rehabilitators.
In addition, the commission asked the DNR to move forward with:

An experimental mandatory antler point restriction regulation in a five-county CWD Core Area, including Ionia, Kent, Mecosta, Montcalm and Newaygo counties. The restriction would begin in 2019, provided a survey of hunters shows support for the requirement and specific department guidelines are met. This is intended as a tool to evaluate the effects of antler point restrictions on the spread and prevalence of CWD, along with deer population reduction.
A hunter-submitted proposal for mandatory antler point restrictions in Huron, Tuscola, Sanilac, St. Clair and Lapeer counties. If hunter surveys support this regulation and specific department guidelines are met, it would be implemented in 2019.
The regulations were developed by a nine-member Chronic Wasting Disease Working Group, whose work included public hearings in Bay City, Cadillac, Detroit, DeWitt, Gaylord, Houghton, Iron Mountain, Kalamazoo, Marquette, Newberry and Rockford.

More than 650 peopled attend the public meetings, and the DNR received comments and suggestions via 361 hard-copy surveys and 135 online surveys.

Details on all regulations will be added to the online hunting digests on the DNR website, and DNR staff will be available at deer-check stations during the hunting seasons, according to the DNR press release.

https://www.michigan.gov/emergingdiseases/0,4579,7-186-76711_78204---,00.html

For additional questions, contact the DNR Wildlife Division at (517) 284-9453.
 

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Its funny that these baiting and feeding bans never define what bait and feed is. Is a pile of sunflower hearts treated differently than a pile of kernel corn?
 

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In PA if you have bears visiting your bird feeder the PGC can order you to remove the feeder, , the same goes for elk, if you don't you can be prosecuted.
§ 137.33. Feeding of certain wildlife prohibited.
It is unlawful to, except for normal or accepted farming, habitat management practices, oil and gas drilling, mining, forest management activities or other legitimate commercial or industrial practices, intentionally lay or place food, fruit, hay, grain, chemical, salt or other minerals anywhere in this Commonwealth for the purpose of feeding bear or elk, or to intentionally lay or place food, fruit, hay, grain, chemical, salt or other minerals that may cause bear or elk to congregate or habituate an area. If otherwise lawful feeding is attracting bear or elk, the Commission may provide written notice prohibiting the activity.



I suspect that Michigan like PA has a definition of what is considered bait and our definition is all inclusive.

§ 2308. Unlawful devices and methods.

(a) General rule.--Except as otherwise provided in this title, it is unlawful for any person to hunt or aid, abet, assist or conspire to hunt any game or wildlife through the use of:

(8) Any artificial or natural bait, hay, grain, fruit, nut, salt, chemical, mineral or other food as an enticement for game or wildlife, regardless of kind and quantity, or take advantage of any such area or food or bait prior to 30 days after the removal of such material and its residue. Nothing contained in this subsection shall pertain to normal or accepted farming, habitat management practices, oil and gas drilling, mining, forest management activities or other legitimate commercial or industrial practices. Upon discovery of such baited areas, whether prosecution is contemplated or not, the commission may cause a reasonable area surrounding the enticement to be posted against hunting or taking game or wildlife. The posters shall remain for 30 days after complete removal of the bait.
 

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WW... In PA if you're not hunting around it are you allowed to leave food and minerals out? The reason I ask is because I have a relative who's not a hunter and she leaves a salt block in her side yard throughout the year. (She likes to watch the deer) It's clearly visible from the road. One year during deer season I told her she needed to bring it in before she got in trouble. She said she called the PGC and they told her it was ok???? She also puts apples and pears out for them occasionally.
 

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(a) General rule.--Except as otherwise provided in this title, it is unlawful for any person to hunt or aid, abet, assist or conspire to hunt any game or wildlife through the use of:

(8) Any artificial or natural bait, hay, grain, fruit, nut, salt, chemical, mineral or other food as an enticement for game or wildlife, regardless of kind and quantity, or take advantage of any such area or food or bait prior to 30 days after the removal of such material and its residue. Nothing contained in this subsection shall pertain to normal or accepted farming, habitat management practices, oil and gas drilling, mining, forest management activities or other legitimate commercial or industrial practices. Upon discovery of such baited areas, whether prosecution is contemplated or not, the commission may cause a reasonable area surrounding the enticement to be posted against hunting or taking game or wildlife. The posters shall remain for 30 days after complete removal of the bait.
Yes. The above is the definition of baiting while engaged in hunting. The question is what is the definition of bait and feed when it comes to CWD regulations? Are all "feeds" used to attract wildlife treated the same when it comes to enforcement of these regulations?

The point is non hunters are responsible for more tonnage of feed deposited for the purposes of attracting and viewing wildlife. A ban of the use of bait and feed should be all inclusive whereby any bait or feed that is attractive to deer should be illegal to use if a ban is to have any measurable affect.
 

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Slippery, yes you may have a salt block in your yard if not hunting over it, however, if it attracts bear or elk the PGC could order removal even if no one is hunting.

DPMS, yes the same definition of bait applies to the CWD regulations. The regulations :
(7) It is unlawful to directly or indirectly feed wild, free-ranging cervids within any Disease Management Area established within this Commonwealth. This prohibition may not be construed to apply to normal or accepted agricultural, habitat management, oil and gas drilling, mining, forest management, or other legitimate commercial or industrial practices. If otherwise lawful feeding is attracting cervids, the Commission may provide written notice prohibiting this activity. Failure to discontinue this activity is a violation of this section.
 

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DPMS, yes the same definition of bait applies to the CWD regulations.
If so, then I assume highly visible bird feeders are aggressively targeted by LE in the CWD zones if kind and quantity are irrelevant? Some types of seed are highly attractive to cervids.
 

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I cannot answer that question, you would have to asked the PGC. I am pretty sure if an officer drives by a house that has deer of elk eating under a bird feeder and they see it, they would stop and give the occupants a cease and desist feeding order verbally and follow it up in writing. I doubt they are actively looking for them, but as I said the PGC either the regional offices or Hbg could give you the answer.
 

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I cannot answer that question, you would have to asked the PGC. I am pretty sure if an officer drives by a house that has deer of elk eating under a bird feeder and they see it, they would stop and give the occupants a cease and desist feeding order verbally and follow it up in writing. I doubt they are actively looking for them, but as I said the PGC either the regional offices or Hbg could give you the answer.
Was it Pa that I saw proposed legislation or proposed regulations that exempted feeding birds?
 

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A long time ago while I was still working, probably about 15 or 16 years, there was a bill that would have prohibited the feeding of all wildlife except back yard bird feeder were exempt. There was such an uproar from the public, both hunting and non hunting that the bill went nowhere. I believe had the bill been written to ban feeding from August until the end of big game season it might have passed.
 

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Yeah. Any ban on baiting or feeding deer due to CWD risk should not exempt any group and enforcement should be uniform.
 

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I don' t disagree. The bill you inquired about was before CWD reared it's head.
 

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Both have 4 deer stopping by every evening. From a CWD perspective, how is one different than the other.

Baiting/Feeding, as it applies to the PGC, and their authority to regulate, should ONLY apply to hunting situations. I mean, how many homes are there in PA ? I have no clue, and neither does anybody else. How many feed birds ? Rabbits ? Deer ? Squirrel ? How many toss their scraps in the yard for the animals, instead of tossing it in a garbage can ? I know I do. BUT, how in the world would you think some regulatory mandate, made by the PGC, to stop all ancillary feeding of wildlife, would go over ? It's not practical. It will never fly. The legislature would never entertain, or pass such a proposed bill, nor should they.


It's outlandish to think a complete "feeding ban" of wildlife, would be practical in PA. The PGC regulates feeding/baiting as it applies to hunting. That is right, and that's what they should stick with.
 

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No they are doing the right thing regulating feeding of bear and elk because it is a safety measure and lots of neighborhood problems have happened because of feeding elk and bear and vbringing them in close contact with people. Now with CWD in our state all feeding of deer should be enacted statewide, not just in DMAs.
 

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Baiting/Feeding, as it applies to the PGC, and their authority to regulate, should ONLY apply to hunting situations. I mean, how many homes are there in PA ? I have no clue, and neither does anybody else. How many feed birds ? Rabbits ? Deer ? Squirrel ? How many toss their scraps in the yard for the animals, instead of tossing it in a garbage can ? I know I do. BUT, how in the world would you think some regulatory mandate, made by the PGC, to stop all ancillary feeding of wildlife, would go over ? It's not practical. It will never fly. The legislature would never entertain, or pass such a proposed bill, nor should they.
The question was, from a CWD perspective, how is a pile of sunflower kernels under a bird feeder different than a pile of corn under a trail camera when 4 deer are visiting both on a regular basis?

You are correct that the bird lovers would freak out and the tree hugging legislators would bow to them. As it stands now, in the CWD areas, feeding birds is a violation if deer are frequenting the area. Despite what Woods Walker said, I doubt it is heavily enforced though as the PGC doesn't want the black eye. They would rather target hunters, IMO.

If the PGC wants to ban feeding of deer, they have to ban it all or there will be no measurable difference in effect. Non hunters are responsible for more "feed" being deposited than hunters are.

It's outlandish to think a complete "feeding ban" of wildlife, would be practical in PA. The PGC regulates feeding/baiting as it applies to hunting. That is right, and that's what they should stick with.
The PGC is tasked with responsibly managing all wildlife in Pa. If the purposeful feeding of one type of wildlife is causing harm to another, it is their responsibility to curtail it.
 
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