Problem is CWD isn't the only disease, deer have been overpopulated for many years, causing many diseases. The only thing to do is to lower the numbers of deer. The big question is by how much? The more deer, the more deer hunting money. Managing the correct number of deer won't be profitable. Deer hunters are not going to like the targeted deer population goal. Wolves will also have an effect on deer numbers, already has, and will continue to get worse.
Many years ago Wisconsin had a large variety of wildlife big and small but killed them all off to settle the area and turn it into America's Dairy Land. We kept deer around because they adapted easily, were cute and fairly harmless, and profitable and fun to hunt. With no other predators, we could grow as many deer to hunt as we wanted. We got greedy, grew too many deer, they start getting sick and die off. Wolves come from Minn and Canada and find so many deer and can't resist moving in....the deer have not seen a predator in over 100 years, easy pickin's for the wolves.... Federal Government just put the wolf back on the endangered species list as of Sept. 29, 2008, Yet Wisconsin already has 564 wolves with only enough habitat for 500 and the goal was 350. They were able to wack about 38 problem wolves durring the short period of delisting, so we were up to 602.
Acording to the DNR website, we have 143 wolf packs in Wisconsin who will average 5-6 pups per pack. 143x5=715 wolf pups, 143x6= 858 wolf pups. So 564 wolves today should be between 1279 - 1422 wolves next year. 1422 wolves will eat 25,596 deer in one year, not to mention a heck of a lot of small game.. Where are the wolves going to go when the deer are all gone up north? Each wolf eats an average of 18 deer per year and the wolf population has grown much faster than the DNR'S projections.
The DNR want's the deer herd to go from 1,200,000 down to 700,000. We have 564 wolves and we can't touch them. DNR can't touch them. What is the DNR going to do when deer get under 700,000? As a deer hunter, what are you going to do? As of 2007 the DNR says the deer herd is 74% above targeted goal. Take 3 out of 4 deer out that you saw last season. That's the goal. What's that going to do to the 9 year waiting list for a black bear tag?
The DNR has got the deer numbers right for a change. The goal should be 700,000 deer, and 350 wolves. But that's just a small part of the big picture. What's missing? Why wont the DNR plan work?
The answer is about as simple as 5th grade biology. Compare the animals of the food chain in Wisconsin now to before the white man settled this area. Not only are we missing the links of proper food for wolves, but the animals wolves eat also eat certain plant life, and when that plant life isn't eaten, it's not taken care of. That leads to more invasive species, more pesticides and herbicides, more lost natural habitat. Every missing animal has it's role to play, niche to fill, job to do. Now that the Feds have turned wolves loose in our deer petting zoo, we're going to have to return as many missing links back to the food chain, or watch as the wolves, Feds, and Department of Agriculture and DNR destroy what's left of big game hunting in Wisconsin.
Deer and Deer hunting in Wisconsin as we've known it will never be the same. Managing the land for deer quantity doesn't work but managing deer, elk, bear and wolves might. Add buffalo it works better,....the closer you get to the original food chain, the better. Instead of 1.2 million deer we get 700,000 better quality deer to hunt, and in 10-20 years the missing deer tags will be replaced with elk tags, more bear tags, wolf tags, buffalo tags, maybe even a moose tag or two. The more species the better, big and small, so our future doesn't solely depend on white tail deer as it is now. Our number 1 big game species other than deer and wolves in Wisconsin is turkey. 20 years ago, we had no turkey's, 10 years ago we started hunting them. To get our zoo in order, elk and buffalo are needed now. The wolves are already there and we'll be below 700,000 deer sooner than we think. Our future depends on our next move. We've heard the nightmare wolf stories from out west, now it's our turn. When you're served lemons, make lemonade. When you are served wolves, make a better food chain. Wolves aren't the only animal on that endangered list and to support wolves and hunting in Wisconsin, we're going to need a much better food chain.
American by birth, hunter by choice.