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The U.S. Senate on Wednesday ended years of stalemate by giving final approval to a bill that will regulate ships' ballast nationwide and let Great Lakes states, as a group, add a more protective layer of ballast water rules to keep out invasive species such as zebra mussels.
Wolf supporters on Wednesday made good on a September pledge and filed suit to force the federal government to develop a broader recovery plan for gray wolves across more of the U.S. The Center for Biological Diversity filed suit in federal district court in Washington against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for violating the Endangered Species Act by never developing a comprehensive recovery plan for gray wolves nationwide.
One of four wolves captured in Minnesota and relocated to Isle Royale in Lake Superior has died, and National Park Service scientists say they don't know why. The wolf was one of four trapped on the Grand Portage Indian Reservation in late September and early October and moved to Isle Royale to help bolster the island's fading wolf population.
It won't be the good old days of Northwestern Wisconsin deer hunting, like way back in the early 2000s when hunters harvested more than 15,000 deer in Douglas County in one year alone, an all-time record that may never be broken. But overall, the 2018 Wisconsin firearms deer season that begins Saturday should be pretty good, even better than 2017 which ended up the 16th highest buck harvest in Douglas County in 58 years of modern records.
When Teresa Head was preparing for her first-ever deer hunt in 2016 she made a decision that didn't seem remarkable to her at the time. Head used ammunition with non-toxic, copper bullets instead of lead bullets. The neophyte nimrod was part of a mentored hunting program to get new people into the sport and, as part of that training, the course she took mentioned the issues of lead in the environment, killing birds, and lead fragments in venison that could be ingested by people who eat the meat.
Minnesota statute spells out how the St. Louis County board can go about replacing Pete Stauber once his seat is formally vacated. If Stauber doesn't resign sooner, the vacation would occur when he is sworn in as Congressman in January. The state statute gives the county board two choices: • Call a special election to be held on either the second Tuesday of February, March, April, May, August or November. The board can leave the seat open until voters pick a replacement.
Rain, snow and wind — especially on Sunday in the Northland — apparently combined to keep hunters out of the woods, and deer still roaming the woods, over opening weekend of Minnesota's firearms deer season. Registration numbers from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources for the first two days of the season were down statewide 14.6 percent compared to the first two days of 2017, with 62,957 deer registered through Sunday this year compared to 73,759 last year.
Preliminary registration numbers show hunters harvested 3,685 black bears during the 2018 Wisconsin bear hunting seasons. This represents an 11 percent decrease from the 4,136 black bears harvested in 2017. Scott Walter, large carnivore specialist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, said the decline was to some extent expected as the agency reduced the harvest quota in three of four bear management zones to bolster the population.
NORTH STAR TOWNSHIP — Tradition is a huge part of the Minnesota deer hunting experience. Stories of big deer bagged and of missed bucks with giant racks that somehow get bigger every year. Ritual night-before-season meals. Who gets to use grandpa's gun and sit in his stand. But there's a tradition going on at the McCabe family deer camp, in the woods just north of Duluth, that's extraordinary in its longevity and which shows little sign of fading.
Rob Deyo had a sense of purpose as he rested his cannon of a deer rifle, a .338 Winchester magnum, on a sandbag and fired three shots at a paper target. Deyo, of Hermantown, who hunts south of Hibbing, has some specific and very large bucks on his brain which he's hoping to see Saturday morning — the first day of Minnesota's firearms deer season. "I've got some really good ones around. I know right where I'm going to be Saturday morning,'' said Deyo. His pre-season scouting and trail cameras have revealed multiple large bucks on his deer camp's 280 acres.