2006 Gun Deer Hunting Season

By: Justin Ware
By: Justin Ware

Less than an hour into the 2006 gun deer hunting season and Bill Copus already had what he came for.

"It will take me five minutes to gut him out and we'll drag him up to the truck," said Copus.

The 10-point buck Copus shot early Saturday morning outside Barneveld used to be all a hunter would need to call the season successful.

As Bill put it, the last thing a hunter wants to do is waste a beautiful animal if they weren't going to use the meat.

"As long as it's going to go somewhere," said Copus. "In the past it's gone nowhere and it was just a waste of an animal."

Thanks to chronic wasting disease, times have changed.
The Wisconsin DNR has new rules in the eradication zones; that includes the land around Barneveld.

Here, hunters have basically unlimited rights to harvesting deer.

"Earn a buck is gone," said Greg Matthews, Wisconsin department of natural resources. "It's either sex. You can shoot as many deer from either sex as you want and get up to four free permits per day from the Department."

Matthews says population control is the reason for the changes.

He says he understands some hunters might have a problem with shooting unlimited deer, but the more they harvest, the healthier the population will be.

"That's the key to any sort of disease management amongst either a wild population or a captive one is depopulation," said Matthews.

There's one other thing the DNR wants you to know about this hunting season, it's got very little to do with deer and a lot to do with keeping yourself warm.

DNR officials are also concerned about the health of Wisconsin's trees.

Emerald ash borers are a real threat to the Badger state's forests and officials say the only way to make sure you're not bringing the bugs across the border, is by not bringing any firewood across the border.

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