Minnesota youth deer hunt begins Thursday

Minnesota’s inaugural statewide youth deer season kicks off Thursday, Oct. 17, and continues through Sunday, Oct. 20. The youth season is open to young hunters from 10 to 17 years old with a deer license. Full details are available on the Department of Natural Resources’ youth deer hunting page at mndnr.gov/hunting/deer/youth.html.

That same weekend, hunters can participate in an early antlerless-only deer season in some southeast deer permit areas and in deer Permit Area 604. Find more information on Page 74 of the DNR hunting regulations book, available in print and online.

Hunters in either of these seasons who are hunting in chronic wasting disease management or control zones must abide by carcass movement restrictions. In disease management zones, deer must be tested for CWD during all seasons.

Deer harvested in the southeast control zone outside of mandatory testing dates (Nov. 9-10 and Nov. 23-24) may be tested voluntarily at self-service sampling stations. Full details are available at mndnr.gov/cwd.

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-- Herald staff report

DNR conducting deer pesticide study

The DNR is asking deer hunters to help with a pilot study to screen hunter-harvested deer for the presence of a pesticide called a neonicotinoid. Neonicotinoid pesticides are insecticides that are applied through seed treatments, in foliar sprays, applied granularly to pastures and injected into trees.

Hunters can participate by signing up online and sending the spleen from their harvested deer through a sampling kit the DNR will mail out the week of Oct. 28. If hunters include a tooth with the sample, the DNR will age the deer for free. After test results return, hunters will receive a letter with the age of their deer and the level of neonicotinoid exposure that was found.

For more information, contact Eric Michel, DNR farmland deer project leader, at eric.michel@state.mn.us or (507) 578-8918.

-- Herald staff report

Governor’s Deer Opener events begin Nov. 7

Minnesota’s four-day Governor’s Deer Hunting Opener festivities get underway Thursday, Nov. 7, with a Welcome to Camp Social from 7:30 to 10 p.m. at Z103 Bar & Grill in Fergus Falls, Minn.

The Minnesota Governor's Deer Hunting Opener runs from Thursday, Nov. 7, through Sunday, Nov. 10, in Fergus Falls, and coincides with the start on Saturday, Nov. 9, of the firearms deer hunting season.

“This event is all about celebrating Minnesota's deer hunting tradition, and promoting the economic and environmental benefits of deer hunting,” said James Burnham, DNR hunter recruitment, retention and reactivation coordinator.

The deer camp social is free and open to the public.

The next day, Friday, Nov. 8, the public also is invited to a Big Buck Brunch from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at Bigwood Event Center, where a variety of speakers will talk about Minnesota’s deer hunting tradition and its impact on the state.

Speakers traditionally include the DNR commissioner, Explore Minnesota director, the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association director and Gov. Tim Walz. Tickets for the brunch are $20 and can be purchased locally at the Fergus Falls Area Chamber of Commerce, online at www.mndeerhunters.com or by calling (218) 259-1368.

On Saturday, Nov. 9, a Tales of the Hunt lunch begins at 11 a.m. hosted by Mabel Murphy's restaurant in Fergus Falls. The meal is $9.50, and attendees can join Gov. Walz to hear about his morning hunt.

More info: mngovernorsdeeropener.com.

-- Herald staff report

Did you know?

  • National Wildlife Refuge Week begins Sunday, Oct. 13 and continues through Saturday, Oct. 19. The annual event is observed during the second full week of October. The National Wildlife Refuge System is a network of 567 national wildlife refuges and 38 wetland management districts. More than 55 million Americans visit refuges every year, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which oversees the Refuge System.

  • The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is taking orders for its North Dakota Outdoors calendar, the source for all hunting season and application dates for 2020. Along with color photographs of North Dakota wildlife and scenery, the calendar includes sunrise-sunset times and moon phases. To order online, check out the Game and Fish website at gf.nd.gov and click the buy and apply link; or send $3 for each, plus $1 postage, to Calendar, North Dakota Game and Fish Department, 100 N. Bismarck Expressway, Bismarck, ND 58501-5095. Include a three-line return address with the order to ensure the calendar is delivered.

  • The North Dakota Game and Fish Department reminds hunters, trappers and anglers that an equipment registration number -- or a name, address and telephone number -- must be displayed on all equipment requiring identification, on state wildlife management areas. Equipment such as ground blinds, tree stands, cameras and traps must have an ID number when used on WMA lands. More info: gf.nd.gov.

  • A permit is required to legally possess a dead deer found near a road or in a field in North Dakota, enforcement personnel from the Game and Fish Department said in a reminder. Only shed antlers can be possessed without a permit. Permits to possess are free and available from game wardens and local law enforcement offices.

  • Hunters in North Dakota are reminded to properly dispose of dead deer. Deer carcasses cannot be left on the side of a roadway or in a ditch, and deer parts cannot be discarded in commercial dumpsters.

-- compiled by Brad Dokken