Bemidji Game Refuge Open to Firearms Deer Hunting
The 74-square-mile Bemidji Game Refuge will be open to firearms deer hunting this fall, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
In areas where discharge of firearms is legal, deer hunters will be allowed to take up to five deer during the Zone 1 season (Nov. 5-20) and muzzleloader season (Nov. 26-Dec. 11). The entire refuge was open to firearms deer hunting last year. A 6.5-mile section of the refuge was open in 2003.
"Deer densities remain high in the refuge," said Michael DonCarlos, DNR wildlife program manager. "This hunt is aimed at reducing car-deer collisions and deer damage to crops, shrubs and gardens."
The DNR will continue firearms deer hunting at the Bemidji Game Refuge through the 2006 deer season, when the hunt will be evaluated based on results from three years of firearms hunting. Results will be presented at public input meetings in the Bemidji area. Archery hunting has been allowed in the refuge since 1972.
During firearms deer seasons, all hunters and trappers must wear blaze orange on a visible portion of their hat and clothing above the waist, excluding sleeves and gloves. The blaze orange requirement does not apply to waterfowl hunters in a stationary shooting location or trappers who are on the water.