Hunters participating in the 2010 Wisconsin deer hunting seasons should be aware of a number of new rules in place this year.
Among the major changes are a rule that now allows use of magnifying scopes on muzzleloader rifles and another allowing the “quartering” of deer in the field to ease their transport.
Scopes or telescopic sights on muzzleloaders
Starting this deer season, hunters using muzzleloader firearms to hunt in Wisconsin may legally use a telescopic sight or scope with magnification during the 10-day muzzleloader-only deer season. Muzzleloaders with scopes may now be used for all gun deer seasons, including certain state parks with special muzzleloader seasons. There is no restriction on power or magnification of scopes or telescopic sights. Laser sights are only legal if the person holds a Class C disabled hunting permit.
“Quartering” of deer
Hunters may now divide a deer or bear into not more than 5 parts prior to registration, but only to facilitate removal from the field. The head must remain attached to one of the 5 main parts, and hunters must retain all parts, including hide and lower legs, except entrails from the field and exhibit at registration.
Movement of Deer Carcasses: from CWD Zone or other CWD States
Hunters are now allowed to transport a whole deer carcass, or parts that contain the head, neck or spinal column from the chronic wasting disease management zone and deer, elk or moose from other states where CWD has been identified to areas in Wisconsin outside the Wisconsin CWD management zone if delivered to a licensed meat processor or licensed taxidermist within 72 hours. The taxidermist or meat processor must be told that the animal came from a CWD area so they know to dispose of the head, neck and spinal column at a licensed landfill or rendering plant.
Other changes include:
? Rifles are now allowed for firearm deer hunting in: all of Dunn County, including portions south of Hwy 170; in Shawano County, South of 29 and West of J; and in all of Hartman Creek State Park in Waupaca and Portage counties, except areas of the park closed to hunting. NOTE: Rifle hunting is not allowed in the remaining portions of Waupaca County. A final vote will be required in spring of 2011 before that rule change can be implemented;
? A nine-day firearm deer season created in Potawatomi and Whitefish Dunes State Parks;
? The three-day archery license waiting period is repealed; and
? Bucks only Deer Management Units for 2010 include: 7, 13, 28, 29A, 29B, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 49A, 52 and 52A (for gun and archery seasons).
A New Hunting and Trapping Regulations fact sheet (pdf) is available on the Department of Natural Resources website at www.dnr.wi.gov which has a full list of new hunting and trapping regulations that includes some rule changes that were implemented late in 2009.