Big changes coming to Michigan deer control stations this hunting season, MNR says
LANSING, MI – Hunters in Michigan should expect big changes at MNR deer checkpoints this season.
Staffing and funding shortages, due to both funding associated with the long-term decline of the hunter base and the COVID-19 pandemic, will result in a reduction in the locations of checkpoints and drop boxes, dates and times of opening and number of deer heads. who will be accepted for chronic wasting disease testing.
Additionally, hunters are required to wear masks and follow social distancing guidelines when at deer checkpoints. In some cases, hunters are required to remain in their vehicles while their deer is being checked.
“This is an unprecedented period in the history of our state, with serious challenges affecting everyone. We ask for your patience and grace as we adapt to meet these challenges, ”said Acting MNR Wildlife Division Chief Dan Kennedy.
“Michigan Hunters have a long history of partnering with MNR for the good and health of the state’s deer population. Let us continue to work together to protect public health as well. “
Many checkpoints will only be open during certain parts of the firearms deer season in November and longer wait times than usual can be expected. In parts of the state where CWD and bovine tuberculosis samples are needed, checkpoints and drop boxes will be available to hunters.
Specifically, deer heads captured in Jackson, Isabella, Gratiot, Delta, Dickinson and Menominee counties will be accepted for testing from October 3 to January 4.
Deer heads from Clinton, Dickinson, Eaton, Gratiot, Ingham, Ionia, Jackson, Kent and Montcalm counties will be accepted for state testing only from November 15-18.
The archery season begins Thursday. The traditional season of armed deer begins on November 15th.
Information on the new checkpoint procedures can be found in the Hunting Book 2020 or to Michigan.gov/CWD. The hours and locations of the deer control stations will be updated this week and will be available at Michigan.gov/DeerCheck