The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board voted Tuesday to restrict a new law allowing hunting in state parks after the board received letters and emails mostly criticizing the new law.
The board originally approved Act 168, known as the Sporting Heritage Act, in April, which opened most state parks and trail properties to hunting and trapping from October 15 to late May. The law is to go into effect January 1, 2013.
Tuesday’s decision substantially reduces the reach of the law by limiting the number of state parks which can be hunted and by shortening the season therein. Board members voted 7-0 to limit the law.
“I think this is a sensible plan given the strong response we received from the public,” said board member Jane Wiley, according to the Journal Sentinel. “It increases opportunity for hunters and trappers but reduces the impact on other traditional park users.”
Hunting and trapping will be allowed on most state park and trail properties between November 15 to December 15 and turkey hunting on said land will last for three weeks in April. Deer archery season in state parks will be from November 15 to the first Sunday in January. The board made the use of dog-proof traps a requirement and prohibited hunters from shooting across trails.
When the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) was instructed to implement the original plan, it received a large amount of negative comments. The Journal Sentinel reports that of the 2,033 comments received, 1,949 were opposed to the plan.