"Wisconsin has kind of a duel/split/overlap season," said DNR Wildlife Biologist, Jeremy Holtz.
"There's hunters that use the aid of dogs and hunters that hunt with other methods not utilizing dogs. And every year they alternate taking turns on what kind of hunter goes first."
This year hound hunters go first.
Last year hunters killed a total of 156 bears in Oneida County.
The county is part of Zone B, one of the four bear management Zones in the state.
"The highest counties had over 400 bears harvested per county," Holtz said.
"So it could be pretty significant bear harvest in a number of northern Wisconsin counties."
For a hound hunter like Steve White, he uses Plott Hounds.
"They're following scent. They're completely following scent. At some point in time they may actually get to see the animal and be faced to face with it," said Whites, Woods and Water owner, Steve White.
"But when we turn them loose they're trailing hounds, they're scent dogs. They're going to follow the track of that animal to where ever that animal has gone."
Mike Roznowski got his first chance to see those dogs take off. He just started bear hunting.
"I really wasn't sure if I wanted to hunt with dogs or with bait, but I accompanied Steve about a month ago with his dogs and it was really exciting," Roznowski said.
"The dogs were so into it. You know excited to get on a trail. I decided that's what I wanted to do and it was a lot of fun."
If you're a first timer like Mike, Steve says he always tells his clients to do their homework.
"Being prepared is the biggest thing. Knowing what you're going to be looking at before you get in," White said.
"Look at a lot of bear pictures, a lot of bear videos. Help to judge your size."
MERRILL - For 32 years Battalion Chief Mike Drury walked into the Merrill Fire Department ready to save lives. Friday he walked out of the department for the last time to start the new phase of his life. "It goes fast it goes really fast," said Drury. Drury was about 18 -years -old when he walked into the Merrill Fire Department for the first time. "When you're 18, 19,20 years old and you're looking at 50 something years old you think you're never going to get there," said Drury.
Drury is one of 184 firefighters to ever work full time with the city of Merrill. "As a firefighter they spend a lot of time at the fire house so they miss a lot of things," said Drury's daughter Cassi. After 32 years of missing birthdays, holidays and family time Drury was ready for a change. "I realized I had enough this is a young man's job," said Drury. Friday afternoon Drury said goodbye to a room of men who merged and became family. "Not having that is a little scary I know they'll always be our family but it's hard to leave," said Cassi. Cassi watched her dad rush off to help his community since the day she was born. "It's scary because you hear about the times things don't go right or the times fire fighters don't come home," said Cassi.
RHINELANDER - A Rhinelander couple thought they were empty nesters. However, an experience volunteering made them open their doors back up to kids who need a temporary home. The Zoerb's adult children moved out years ago. But at any moment they could get a call from social services that make them bring out their parenting skills for another round. Rick and Danielle Zoerb work together as realtors putting people in homes that are the perfect fit. However, the husband and wife know their home can be a good fit for others too. "There's no reason for kids to have to fall through the cracks," said Dani. Rick met a child at a mentorship program a few years ago. It was a meeting that opened a new door for him and his wife. "There was no hesitation on our part when we felt the situation was deteriorating for this young boy," said Rick.
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