Youth Deer Hunt Oct. 30

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Youth hunters ages 12 to 15 will be able to hunt for antlerless deer throughout the state on Oct. 30 in a special one-day hunt established to provide more youth deer hunting opportunity.

“The youth hunt was established in 2001 through the Deer 2000 and Beyond project,” said Brad Koele, assistant deer and bear ecologist with the Department of Natural Resources. “The youth hunt gives young hunters an opportunity to gain valuable hunting experience and time in the field prior to the traditional gun hunting season.”

Since the hunt’s implementation, Koele says, participation has steadily increased as more youth become aware the hunt.

The antlerless gun hunt will be held in all deer management units, except state park and non-quota units. Any licensed hunter, including youth hunters, can already hunt in a Zone T, Earn-a-Buck, or CWD units on this day, which falls within one of two 4-day antlerless only hunts being held in these units Oct. 28-31.

“This hunt is to give those young hunters who hunt in a regular or Hunter’s Choice unit an opportunity to gun hunt for antlerless deer at a time of year when the whether is a little nicer and there is less pressure from other gun hunter’s in the woods,” says Kurt Thiede, DNR wildlife rules and regulations specialist. “The deer management units that are open for the special one-day youth hunt are those designated as ‘Regular Deer Season’ units on the 2004 DMU map in the center of the 2004 Wisconsin Deer Hunting Regulations.”

Youth hunters must have successfully completed a hunter education program and have purchased a 2004 gun deer hunting license to participate in the special hunt. Qualified hunters may harvest one antlerless deer per hunter’s choice or bonus permit in the unit for which that permit was issued.

Youth hunters must be accompanied by an adult 18 years of age or older and one adult may not accompany more than two hunters when participating in this one-day youth hunt. This requirement only applies to deer management units that are not Zone-T, Earn-A-Buck or CWD units.

The regular bow season remains open along with the youth hunt in those units with the special youth hunt. All hunter's, with the exception of waterfowl hunters, must wear blaze orange when hunting on Oct. 30; this includes archery deer, gun deer and small game hunters.

“In those units holding the special youth hunt archers will be able to hunt and are eligible to harvest a buck, but they are required to wear blaze orange since a gun hunt is taking place,” Thiede added.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Brad Koele - (608) 261-7589 or Kurt Thiede - (608) 267-2452