Question 55- Shorten Fall Beaver Trapping Season (# 050210): The population of beaver in Wisconsin has decreased in recent years and is trending downward with a steady, gradual decline in northwest Wisconsin Beaver Management Zone A and a significant decline in northeast Wisconsin Beaver Management Zone B (Beaver Population Analysis, 2008). Beaver populations are stable in southern Wisconsin, Zone C, and increasing in the Mississippi River Zone D. The statewide population is estimated at 66,800 beaver. At present, the open season south of highway 64 is from the first Saturday in November until the end of March for Zone C, and the day after the duck season through March 15 for Zone D. North of highway 64 (Zones A and B) the open season is from the first Saturday in November until the end of April. Spring trapping tends to target dispersing animals while fall and winter trapping targets established colonies. Shortening the season in fall would protect established beaver colonies and allow trappers to take advantage of the spring season when dispersing 2 year old animals will make up a larger proportion of the harvest. USDA-APHIS-Wildlife Services to protect approximately 1,500 miles of high priority trout streams, primarily in northeastern Wisconsin. The majority of beavers are removed in early spring, which is normally late March through early May. This has caused some confusion and conflict between citizen trappers and agency trappers. Better understanding, reduced problems, and additional protection may occur if agency trapping on high priority trout streams would commence after the close of the respective season.
Would you support shortening the beaver trapping season by one month at the beginning of the season (from starting the first Saturday in November to starting the first Saturday in December) in Deer Management Units (DMU) 39, 40, 50, 44, 41, 45, 43, 49A, 49B, 51A, 51B, 63B, and 64?
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Wisconsin DNR spring meeting question # 55
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