Deer Management Working Group Formed

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Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) Secretary Mike Hayden has announced the formation of a unique group of Kansans. The Kansas Deer Management Working Group has been assembled to provide the department with recommendations to maintain responsible deer management policies through legislative and management proposals that will govern the future of deer hunting in Kansas.

The working group, which will meet for the first time on Aug. 1 in Topeka, includes individuals representing a wide array of groups and agencies, such as the Kansas Guides and Outfitters Association, Kansas Farm Bureau, Kansas Bowhunters Association, the Kansas Wildlife Federation, the Kansas Legislature, Kansas Livestock Association, Kansas Wildlife Society, Kansas Wildlife and Parks Commission, Kansas Muzzleloader Association, Kansas Sport hunting Association, Kansas Rifle Association, Travel and Tourism, Meat Processors, K-State Extension, Fort Riley, and KDWP staff.

The group will meet several times this summer and fall to develop recommendations concerning deer hunting and deer management, discussing topics such as transferrable landowner/nonresident deer permits, nonresident and resident deer permit allocation, permit pricing, deer management objectives, and other issues. While most of the individuals asked to serve on the working group will represent an organization or agency, the department will also seek input from the public.

KDWP will host public meetings Aug. 1 at the Kansas State Historical Society Education Classroom, 6425 SW 6th Ave in Topeka; Aug. 2 at the Independence High School Cafeteria, 1301 N. 10th in Independence; Aug. 3 at the Bicentennial Center, Room 203 A-C, 800 The Midway in Salina; Aug. 4 at the Plaza Inn Northcentral Ballroom, 1911 E. Kansas Ave. in Garden City; and Aug. 5 at the Colby Community College Student Union, Room 110, in Colby.

More information about meeting times and locations will be released later. For those not able to attend one of the public meetings, written comments will be accepted. Submit written comments to KDWP, Deer, 512 SE 25th Ave., Pratt, KS 67124, or log on to KDWP's website (www.kdwp.state.ks.us) and e-mail your comments to MikeGM@wp.state.ks.us.

In recent years, deer and deer management issues have been important to many Kansans. Managing deer and deer hunting opportunities is a challenging responsibility of the department with many varied stakeholders involved.

"Assembling this group and meeting with the public is a proactive approach," Secretary Hayden said. "For many different reasons, deer and our wildlife resources are important to our quality of life and economic development. The input we receive will help shape the future of deer management programs."