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LCO TGB Bans Deer Baiting Within the Reservation Boundaires

Updated: Oct 1, 2023

By Joe Morey News Editor

At their weekly meeting, Sept. 25, the Lac Courte Oreilles Tribal Governing Board (TGB) voted unanimously to ban the practice of baiting deer, following along with Sawyer, Barron, Rusk and Washburn Counties after a deer was tested positive at a deer farm in Washburn County for chronic wasting disease.

LCO Conservation Director Brian Bisonette told the TGB at the meeting that he highly recommended LCO do the same. The motion was made by Gary “Little Guy” Clause and seconded by Vice Chairman Tweed Shuman. The motion carried unanimously and goes into effect with the four counties on Oct. 5.

The LCO ban will make it illegal to bait deer for hunting anywhere within the exterior boundaries of the Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation.

The LCO ban will remain in effect until further notice while the county bans will last three years in Washburn County and two years in Barron, Rusk and Sawyer counties. The positive result was found in Washburn but only 10 miles from all three other counties.

The 4-county ban comes as the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) works to reduce the spread of CWD, which scientists happens when deer are in close contact, such as around concentrated food sources. Infected deer also are more likely to leave behind saliva, blood, feces and urine near bait or feeding stations, which all can carry CWD and pass it on to healthy deer.

The DNR is also asking hunters to have their deer tested for CWD stating that collecting the samples helps them assess the presence of the disease in the deer population across the state. Baiting is now banned in most counties in the state due to CWD outbreaks.

In addition to submitting samples for CWD testing, hunters are also encouraged to properly dispose of deer carcass waste by locating a designated dumpster, transfer station or landfill location near you on the DNR website.

Baiting means placing, exposing, depositing, distributing or scattering bait that is capable of attracting or enticing deer. The practice increases the risk of disease transmission by concentrating animals and promoting nose-to-nose contact. Baiting attracts and holds large numbers of deer on private parcels creating a privatization of the deer herd.


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