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Science on Tap focuses on deer managementSubmitted: 11/07/2013
Story By Adam Fox

MINOCQUA - The ultimate goal for many hunters is to bring home a trophy buck. Across the Midwest, that happens the most in Wisconsin.

Scientists from UW-Madison believe that's actually because Wisconsin harvests a lot of antlerless deer.

They say doe harvesting relates to the number of trophy bucks hunters get in a season.

Tim Van Deelen, Wildlife Ecologist at UW-Madison, says those high hunting numbers mean you'll see fewer deer in the woods thorugh the winter.

"We could be like Michigan and Minnesota, but what we would do is we would carry more deer through the winters over the years," Van Deelen said. "And more deer means more plant impact."

Plants are Don Waller's specialty. He's a botanist at U-W Madison.

Studies by his students in the Apostle Islands say deer population effects the makeup of the woods more than many other animals.

"The effects the deer are having in our woods now are not just effecting the woods for a short period of time," Waller said. "They are effecting our woods for half a century or perhaps a century or more into the future."

According to the DNR, more than 245,000 deer were harvested in Wisconsin during last year's gun season.

The 2013, nine day gun season begins November 23rd.




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