Wisconsin Natural Resources Board is asking for public comments regarding the next steps to establishing an early wolf hunt.

Wisconsin gray wolf. Photograph credit Snapshot Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board will meet virtually on Monday for a Special Meeting to discuss the next steps to establish a wolf hunt in Wisconsin for February 2021.

Deadline For Written Comments: 11 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 14 Please submit written comments here.

There’s a lot of problems with starting a wolf hunt right now in February. That’s in the middle of the wolf breeding season. That’s never been done before.”

Collette Adkins, carnivore conservation director at the Center for Biological Diversity.

A conservative advocacy group, Hunter Nation Inc, filed a lawsuit on February 2, 2021, against the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Natural Resources Board (NRB). The plaintiffs believe the NRB violated their rights by not approving a wolf hunt in February. On Thursday February 11th a Jefferson county judge sided with pro wolf hunters and ordered the WDNR, NRB to open a wolf hunt immediately. There will be an appeal. But in the meantime, with a couple weeks left in February before the wolf hunting season ends, will there be time to set a quota which must be approved by the Natural Resources Board along with public input. Thus will the attempt to usurp the democratic process by a few disgruntled pro wolf hunters fail?

Colette Atkins is an attorney with the Center for Bilogical Diversity, based in Arizona. The group filed an amicus brief in support of the DNR’s decision to hold off on a hunt until next fall. Atkins told WPR it’s unfeasible and potentially impossible for the DNR to do the work of implementing a wolf season within the next 17 days.

“(The DNR) committed to having a wolf hunt in 2021 that would start in November,” said Atkins. “The Legislature made a conscious decision to have that start in November. There’s a lot of problems with starting a wolf hunt right now in February. That’s in the middle of the wolf breeding season. That’s never been done before.”

Please submit written comments here on the agenda item to discuss the next steps to establish a wolf hunt in Wisconsin in 2021. Requests for public testimony will not be accepted. The deadline to submit written comments is 11 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 14.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what would happen if they threw hunters into the mix running their dogs during wolf prime breeding.

Rachel Tilseth WDNR Volunteer Wolf Tracker & founder of Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin

The following is a Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Feb. 12, 2021
Contact: Laurie Ross, NRB Board Liaison 
Laurie.Ross@wisconsin.gov or 608-267-7420DNR Office of Communications 
DNRPress@wisconsin.gov

Wisconsin Natural Resources Board 
Announces Special Meeting Feb. 15

Deadline For Written Comments:
11 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 14

MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board will meet virtually on Monday for a Special Meeting to discuss the next steps to establish a wolf hunt in Wisconsin in 2021.

The virtual meeting will begin at 11 a.m. Monday, Feb. 15, originating from the Public Meeting Room G09, State Natural Resources Building (GEF 2), 101 S. Webster St., Madison, Wisconsin. The Board will act on items 1-2 as listed on the agenda.

The public can watch the Special Meeting via Zoom here. If the meeting is at capacity and you are unable to join, the Special Meeting will also be livestreamed here.

Please submit written comments here on the agenda item to discuss the next steps to establish a wolf hunt in Wisconsin in 2021. Requests for public testimony will not be accepted. The deadline to submit written comments is 11 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 14.

The NRB will also meet virtually for the upcoming board meeting at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, to consider several proposed emergency rules and donations. The Board will act on items 1-4 and 7-8 as listed on the Agenda. More information is available here.

2 thoughts on “Wisconsin Natural Resources Board is asking for public comments regarding the next steps to establishing an early wolf hunt.

  1. The DNR already committed to having the 2021 wolf hunt begin in November. It is currently breeding season for wolves. There would be plenty of blood shed with wolves attacking dogs if hunting were begun in February. Do hound hunters really care about their dogs when they turn them loose hunting wolves? Perhaps not because Wisconsin is the only state that reimburses hunters for dogs that are killed by wolves. The state pays up to $2,500 per dog. Since the program began in 1985, the states has paid hunters more than $700,000 for dogs that were killed by wolves. It’s not society’s job to reimburse individuals who voluntarily jeopardize the well being of their dogs by putting them in harm’s way. That is our tax payers money and it is an entitlement that the majority of Wisconsinites don’t have.

    1. Thank you for your comment. It’s true the DNR committed to a November wolf hunt. But it’s because they have no choice the law mandates they hold a hunt. In 2011 the Wisconsin legislators enacted Act 169, that mandates the department (DNR) to hold & manage a wolf hunt. Thus their hands are tied on a wolf hunt, essentially they must follow the law.
      Hunters running dogs on bear are reimbursed when wolves are on the Endangered Species List. But they are not reimbursed when running dogs on wolves because that’s their risk. Now that wolves are not on the Endangered Species List hunters will no longer be reimbursed. Won’t happen now. This is highly publicized information that wolf advocates have known for sometime. The reimbursement money came out of the endangered species fund. What’s in question now is a Jefferson county judge sided with Hunter Nation’s lawsuit and so now the judge ordered the DNR to open a wolf hunt right now in February and the NRB is have a public hearing, which is in the this blog post, to decide the next step. They are asking for public comments.

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