Heavy snow causing deer concerns
The heavy snow that has fallen in parts of Minnesota already is causing concerns about the potential for deer mortality.
Mark Johnson executive director of the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association in Grand Rapids, Minn., said the early onset of winter comes on the heels of two of the lowest deer harvests in several years.
"Last winter was a long winter that hurt the deer," Johnson said. "It wasn't a severe winter, just long, and that made it severe. This year, it's already looking like it's going to be a long winter. It started early."
The Department of Natural Resources in its weekly snow depth map Thursday indicated all of northwest Minnesota has 8 to 18 inches of snow, with pockets near Bemidji as deep as 2 feet. Portions of the Arrowhead in northeast Minnesota already have as much as 3 feet of snow, the DNR reported.
"If we get more snow, there's a real fear that's going to drive the deer population even lower," Johnson said. That could have serious implications on deer management, he added.