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NEWS STORIES

Winter Deer TallySubmitted: 02/11/2013
Story By Ryan Abney

RHINELANDER - Winter weather in the Northwoods can be tough on some people. But we don't usually think about how the climate affects the deer population.

D-N-R Wildlife Biologist Jeremy Holtz gets paid to keep track of deer numbers year-around.

Because winter affects the population, The W-S-I scale is his best friend.

"The W-S-I metric or Winter Severity Index is the number one metric in deer management. We write down the minimum temperature of the day and the snow depth of the day. When the snow depth gets to 18-inches or higher, that's a mark; when the temperature gets below zero, that's also a mark."

So far this season's W-S-I comes in at a mild 20-point. Holtz has been around long enough to see what a bad winter can do.

"In 2007, at this time we were over 100. So you could imagine that deer were starving to death. They were dying of exposure, getting run down by coyotes. There were all sorts of things going on that were limiting the deer population."

The 2007 winter cut deer totals in a big way. But thanks to a string of mild winters, deer numbers are at a normal level.


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 IN OTHER NEWS

WOOD COUNTY - A two car crash in Wood County hurt six people Saturday afternoon.

It happened at the intersection of County Highway B and X in the township of Wood.

The car on County Highway B didn't yield to the car on X.

A 16 year old girl was brought to the hospital by helicopter.

12 and 10 year old girls went by ambulance.

The crash is still being investigated.

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Aaron Schultz owner of Big Daddy's Bar in Rhinelander says preparing for events like this is extremely important for local business owners.

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They did that today by taking a class at Treehaven.

They learned how to tie their own flies to use for fly fishing.

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VILAS COUNTY - A fire destroyed a Vilas County house Saturday afternoon.

The Vilas County Sheriff's Office got a call about the fire in the Township of Winchester.

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The event kicks off spring break, and kids seemed to think it was a great start to their break.

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