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Outdoor Report for November 8, 2012

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White-tailed deer rutting activity is going full throttle, with reports of bucks moving all day in pursuit of does in many areas. Archery deer hunters have been out in force and many nice large deer were registered this week. With the rut at its peak, wardens are also reporting many vehicle-deer collisions taking place. Drivers should watch rode sides closely and if they see a deer cross the road, slow down and be prepared for another deer to be following.

With just 10 days to go before the 2012 gun deer season, hunters should be getting prepared by sighting in firearms and making sure blaze orange clothing is in good condition. The Wisconsin DNR will be ramping up its social media efforts during the upcoming season, with online chats, a new wildlife blog, special facebook posts, and a "tweet-along" with conservation wardens.

The northern zone waterfowl zone reopens this Saturday, and timing should be good as reports of northern diving ducks -- which have been slow so far this year - started to pick up this week. Southern zone waterfowl hunters are still reporting some green-winged teal and wood ducks in the area, which is late in the year for them to still be around. There were 160,000-plus ducks and large numbers of geese using the federal refuge areas at Horicon Marsh and waterfowl numbers along the Upper Mississippi wildlife refuge are at peak right with very impressive numbers of canvasbacks on Pools 5 through 9.

Turkey hunters are reporting that turkeys are forming into large groups already, with as many as 70 birds being seen in some areas. Trappers are reporting fairly good success, particularly for raccoons and that raccoon pelts have primed up over the past several days. The wolf harvest was at 64 animals as of Nov. 7, with the majority of wolves taken so far by trappers.

Water temperatures have fallen to the low 40s on northern lakes, and skim ice has been forming on ponds and a few of the larger lakes have had some shoreline ice, but full ice cover is still a couple of weeks away. There have also been some mornings with some light snow on the ground, but nothing significant as of yet. The seasonably cold weather has kept fishing pressure to a minimum, with only a few die-hard anglers venturing out mostly for musky. In the south, some anglers are getting some walleyes on the Madison lakes but they have had to work pretty hard to get them. Musky anglers have still been having a lot of success on lakes Monona and Waubesa.

Anglers have been in pursuit of walleye, sauger, bluegills and crappies on the Mississippi River, but fishing slowed for walleye and sauger in the last week. Along Lake Michigan, fall salmon runs have pretty much come to an end, but a few brown trout and coho salmon were still caught in the Sheboygan, Milwaukee and Root rivers.

The young whooping cranes released with sandhill cranes at Horicon Marsh left this past weekend and are now almost to their wintering areas. The birds being led by ultralight planes are in Kentucky. Loon migration is now beginning with decent numbers of birds beginning to show up on Lake Michigan and inland lakes in southern Wisconsin. As northern lakes freeze over the next two weeks check large lakes in the Madison area or southeastern Wisconsin for groups of migrating loons.

Statewide Birding Report

Early November means peak numbers of waterfowl, loon migration and the beginnings of the winter bird season. This past week there were very impressive numbers of waterfowl at larger refuges. Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge reports 160,000-plus ducks and large numbers of geese using the federal refuge areas. Waterfowl numbers along the Upper Mississippi National Wildlife Refuge are at peak right now with very impressive numbers of canvasbacks on Pools 5-9. Tundra swan numbers are beginning to build this week and should make for great viewing this upcoming weekend through the freeze-up later in November. Loon migration is now beginning with decent numbers of birds beginning to show up on Lake Michigan and inland lakes in southern Wisconsin. As northern lakes freeze over the next two weeks check large lakes in the Madison area or southeastern Wisconsin for groups of migrating loons. The young whooping cranes released with sandhill cranes at Horicon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge left this past weekend and are now almost to their wintering areas! The birds being led by ultralight planes are in Kentucky and plan to be in Tennessee on the next calm day. Birders across the state have begun reporting good numbers of red and white-winged crossbills, redpolls, pine grosbeaks and other winter finches. This seems to be a particularly good year for red crossbills as they are being reported from pine plantings across the southern portion of the state. Evening grosbeaks, a rare bird in southern Wisconsin, have been reported as far south as Brodhead and even into Indiana! Birders should check their local parks, cemeteries, and other public places for tall pines or spruces as these areas are most likely to hold crossbills and siskins. Rare birds reported this week include the first few reports of snowy owls along Lake Michigan and even from downtown Madison. Red phalaropes were reported in Fond du Lac and Sheboygan and a black-legged kittiwake was spotted at Wisconsin Point in Superior. As always, birders are encouraged to report all of their bird sightings at www.ebird.org/WI to help better track migratory bird populations. - Andy Paulios, wildlife biologists and Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative coordinator

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Northern Region

Ashland DNR Service Center area

Bayfield County - Bucks are making more scrapes and rubs in the woods in northern Bayfield County. Some bow hunters have been having a hard time seeing any size to bucks, but that should be changing in the next week. Grouse hunters are doing better with a keen eye needed to see the birds as they are sitting tight in the woods if you do not have a dog. Trout and salmon in the tributaries are pretty much done with the streams that are still open closing after Nov. 15. There has been mornings with some light snow on the ground, but nothing significant for snow as of yet. - Amie Egstad, conservation warden, Bayfield

Hayward DNR Service Center area

Tuscobia State Trail - The trail was graded two weeks ago from Winter to Birchwood and is in good condition. Snowmobile clubs are busy along the trail at the connecting routes getting ready for the upcoming snowmobile season. The rut is in full swing so watch for bucks crossing the trail in the middle of the day. - Todd Hintz, ranger

Spooner DNR Service Center area

Crex Meadows State Wildlife - Sandhill Cranes have reached their peak. Last count on Oct. 30 was more than 12,000 cranes. Rough-legged hawks have arrived. They should be around for most of the winter. Expect to see tundra swans in the next week or two. Reminder the refuge within Crex Meadows Wildlife Area is closed to walking, driving, trapping, and hunting. Next scheduled program at Crex Meadows is Saturday, Dec. 8 at 1 p.m. about humans and beavers and roles in the environment. - Heidi Rusch, natural resources educator

Park Falls DNR Service Center area

Upper Chippewa Basin fisheries report (Price, Rusk, Sawyer Taylor and inland Ashland and Iron counties) - Seasonably cold weather has kept fishing pressure to a minimum and only a few die-hard anglers have been venturing out on local waters. Most of the fishing pressure continues to be for musky and nearly all of these late-season musky anglers are dragging large suckers around. Success has continued to be generally good -- with quite a few catches of musky in the 34 to 42-inch size, and even a couple in the mid to upper 40-inch range. A few walleye anglers have also been sighted, but action has been generally slow. Water temperatures have fallen into the low 40s and, with overnight temperatures in the teens, some ponds and small lakes have developed a thin layer of skim ice. A few of the larger lakes do have some shoreline ice in the shallow back bays, but full ice cover is still a couple of weeks away. - Skip Sommerfeldt, senior fisheries biologist, Park Falls

Woodruff DNR Service Center area

Bearskin State Trail - The trail is in good condition. Snowmobile clubs are busy along the trail at the connecting routes getting ready for the upcoming snowmobile season. The rut is in full swing so watch for bucks crossing the trail in the middle of the day. - Todd Hintz, ranger

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Northeast Region

Cool days, rain, and wind helped to keep fishing pressure light this past week. Almost all boaters were water fowlers.

Peshtigo DNR Service Center area

Oconto County - Buck still seem to be chasing and continue to lead the hit parade as far as vehicle killed deer accidents. The number of tundra swans on Green Bay has increased with large numbers of waterfowl being seen. Hunters are having varied success with the low water levels on the bay this year. Turkeys are grouped up in very large groups with one group observed of more than 70 birds. Small game hunters report that there is still some good ruffed grouse hunting to be had and with the leaves down they are much easier to see. - Mike Stahl, conservation warden, Oconto Falls

Shore anglers have been having success fishing perch from the Municipal Landing, Oconto Breakwater Park, and Oconto Park II. Early morning and late afternoon have been the most productive times to fish. Minnows and worms have been the baits of choice, fished with crappie rigs or slip bobbers. - Calhoun Derbush - creel clerk

Green Bay DNR Service Center area

Brown County - Musky fishing has been slow on the southern Bay of Green Bay, to the point where the musky anglers are pretty much only on the water on the weekends. Perch fishing however has been picking up on the Oconto River and off of Bayshore County Park. Duck hunting has been good. Canvasback and red heads are common with scaup and goldeneyes being abundant. Some longtail ducks and scoters have also been present. Wardens encourage caution when venturing onto the water due to extremely low water levels and cold water conditions. Wardens further suggest telling friends or family where you are going and when you plan to return. As always wear your life jacket. - Darren Kuhn, marine unit conservation warden, Green Bay

A few sheep head and perch were being caught at Voyageur Park with anglers casting plastics and floating live bait. Suamico and Duck Creek anglers were catching perch using minnows and crawlers. - Calhoun Derbush - creel clerk

Manitowoc County - Raccoon pelts have primed up over the past several days. The rut is still going strong with a lot of buck movement seen throughout the days, and a LOT more at night. - Robert Stroess, , conservation warden, Mishicot

Sturgeon Bay DNR Service Center area

Peninsula State Park - Peninsula State Park will have a muzzleloader deer hunt Nov. 17 - 25, 2012. A Park Access Permit is required for Unit 80C and hunters should obtain a property map identifying those areas closed to hunting within the park. Hunters should be aware there is limited camping available in Tennison Bay campground on a walk-in basis. All other campgrounds are closed for the season. Due to a campground electrification project, only 19 non-electrical sites are open and length of stay is limited to one night. Check at the park office in the morning for longer stays and project updates. Campground roads that go into or near the construction area are closed to vehicular and foot traffic. Please contact the park 1-2 days prior to your arrival to check on site availability and/or closures. Water is available in Tennison Bay campground near site 445 and one vault toilet is open near site 455. All shower and flush buildings and the dump station are closed for the season. If the park office is closed, there is self-registration available at the kiosk across from the office. Remember, no one may set up between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. The wood yard is closed; firewood from more than 25 miles away is not allowed; firewood is sold locally. - Jane Barnowsky, visitor services associate

Potawatomi State Park - The park will be open to deer hunting from Nov. 17 through 25. Hunting regulations and a map can be found on the park's wWb pages. Please be aware of the closed areas in the park and property boundaries. Campers do not need to make reservations for stays between Nov. 1 and March 31. More than 20 electric sites are available for winter camping, with four of the sites plowed throughout the winter. The shower building, sanitary dump station, fish cleaning station, and most water fountains are closed until May 1, 2013. A well at the campground shelter remains open year-round for campers and other park visitors. Volunteers have been busy signing snowmobile trails and preparing for cross-country skiing. Launching and fishing piers are pulled from the water until April 2013. Office hours are currently 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., subject to staffing availability. - Lois M. Hanson, visitor services associate

Kewaunee County - Deer rutting activity is in full swing; many archery hunters are seeing deer they have not seen before and having some success. Pheasant hunters are having continued success on state lands around the county, due to several sportsmen's clubs raising and releasing birds on public property throughout the season. Pheasant hunters should say thanks to those clubs and should attend their local fund raisers so they are able to continue to raise birds to augment the states released birds. Several of those clubs are The Carlton Hunting and Fishing Club, The Kewaunee Hunting and Fishing Club and Muskrat City Sportsmen's Club. - David Allen, conservation warden, Kewaunee

Wautoma DNR Service Center area

Waupaca County - The deer rut is still ongoing and archery hunters have reported seeing deer at all times of the day. The whooping crane is still in southern Waupaca County - in Dayton Township. Anglers have reported that the panfish bite on the Chain O Lakes has slowed down considerably. - Ted Dremel, conservation warden, Wautoma

Deer rut activity going full throttle, bucks are moving all day. Woodcock are long gone, plenty of geese around yet - they will stick around until snow flies. Fair amount of ducks still around, surprisingly even a fair amount of wood ducks (late in the year for them to be around). No word on how fishing has been lately. - Karl Kramer, wildlife technician, Wautoma

Oshkosh DNR Service Center area

Fond du Lac County - Perch fishing has finally slowed down on Lake Winnebago and only a few fishing boats are still seen out on the lake on any given day. Waterfowl hunters are doing well with more people coming to the south end of the lake in layout boats to try harvesting some diving ducks passing through the area. Due to the low water levels this year the trappers are reporting very low harvests of muskrats and noting raccoon number seem down so far this season. The rut is picking up and more deer are being seen, harvested and unfortunately hit by automobiles on local roads and highways. - Alan D. Erickson, conservation warden, Fond du Lac Station

Outagamie County - There are plenty of pheasants on designated wildlife properties that have stocking. These include Brillion, Killsnake and Holland wildlife areas. Cooler weather and the prospect of rain have deterred hunters over the past week. One will need a dog for the birds are in great prairie grassland cover where birds have a tendency to run. As the mourning dove season winds down numerous doves were being seen on Brillion and Killsnake wildlife areas. Best numbers were on Brillion near sunflower food plots and waste soybeans. Several hundred were seen. Bucks are definitely in rut with activity seen during the day on public lands. Marshes are moist so access is still good in most areas. Some quiet areas on small wetlands still hold mallards on Killsnake with the Brillion Marsh seeing some activity of northern birds. Trappers are seeing quite a few muskrats in their traps on both Brillion and Killsnake wildlife areas on small wetlands and river courses. Raccoon activity has been good and with the corn coming off of fields, drainage way areas are great places to set traps far away from occupied buildings. - Dick Nikolai, wildlife biologist, Appleton

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Southeast Region

Milwaukee DNR Service Center area

Lakeshore State Park - Fishing is generally slow, but chinook and brown trout are still present in Lakeshore's lagoons and in the Milwaukee river channel. Spoons and crank baits have been successful, as have spawn sacks fished just off the bottom. Recent rains have raised river levels and should make river fishing more successful. Use care when fishing the basins from boats due to the extremely low water levels. Water levels in Lake Michigan are approaching the record low, and additional drops are expected over the next several months. The lake bed below the stone rip-rap has been exposed several times, presenting an opportunity to see the zebra/quagga mussels carpeting the lagoon bottom. The marina is open until November. Reservations for the slips can be made up to 11 months in advance by calling 414-274-4281. The short-grass prairie demonstration gardens are in their late fall phase, with the tan to reddish prairie grasses contrasting nicely with the blue, white and purple asters. Best viewing times are early mornings or evenings, when the sun shines through the little bluestem and highlights the fluffy white seeds. The grey and red foxes are still regular visitors to the park. Bird activity is fairly quiet, but the winter arrivals are starting. Scaup, golden-eyes, mergansers, coots and buffleheads are present in low numbers. A few red-breasted loons were also seen. Lakeshore has over a mile of concrete-paved trails. All park trails are open and in good condition. The Summerfest loop is now open for public use and will remain open until next year's festival season.- Thomas Kroeger, parks and recreation specialist, Milwaukee

Lake Michigan fisheries team report - Compiled from creel clerks by Jeffrey Zinuticz, fisheries technician, Milwaukee

Sheboygan County - The only reported activity has been on the Sheboygan River were a few brown trout, coho salmon and northern pike have been caught on crank baits or spawn fishing the deeper downriver sections of the river early or late in the day. Very few if any boats ventured out over the weekend, some lighter winds will be needed before trollers are able to get out safely.

Ozaukee County - Boat and pier fishing was slow due to high winds over the weekend. There were, however, some brown trout and a few steelhead taken at the power plant discharge the best presentation was using spawn sacs fished off bottom or drifted in the current. A few fish were in Sauk Creek but the water was very low and clear and fishing was slow.

Milwaukee County - In Milwaukee fishing was rather slow over the weekend. Some boats were able to get out and troll the harbor were some brown trout were being caught on crank baits fished anywhere from 10-15 feet down. Most fish ran on the smaller side. Shore fishing was slow with only an occasional brown or steelhead being caught near the Summerfest grounds and lagoon area. The best bait was spawn fished under a float or fished off of the bottom, bright colored crank baits also took a few fish. Some stable weather and lighter winds should help improve near shore fishing. The Milwaukee River was beginning to drop and get clear and only a few coho and brown trout have been caught on spawn near Estabrook Park and down river to North Avenue. More rain will be needed to improve river fishing.

Racine County - The steelhead facility processed and passed up stream 140 fish this week and the next possible processing day will be Thursday Nov. 8. Fishing was slow as well in Racine with only an occasional brown trout or steelhead caught in the harbor area on spawn fished under a float. The Root River was running clear and low again with only a few fish present. Some rain will be needed to increase water levels and improve steelhead and brown fishing.

Plymouth DNR Service Center area

Theresa Marsh State Wildlife Area - Bow hunters report we're now into the peak of deer rutting activity in this part of the state. Goose hunting has been slow on Theresa Marsh. The most successful goose hunters figure out where the geese are flying to feed in agricultural fields, and then asking permission to hunt from those farmers. The water level behind the dam on Theresa Marsh main pool has peaked and is now being dropped just slightly (2 to 3 inches total) in preparation for freeze up. Assuming temperatures stay about average for November the plan is to leave the floating boat ramps at the Theresa Marsh dam in the water until after the duck season ends Dec. 2, after which they will be lifted out of the water for winter to prevent them being damaged by ice. The public comment period is open right now through Nov. 30 to submit comments about the Master Plans of Theresa Marsh (Dodge & Washington counties), Allenton Marsh, and Jackson Marsh in Washington County, Cedarburg Bog in Ozaukee County, and six other state properties in Fond du Lac and Sheboygan counties. The DNR is looking for thoughts on future fish and wildlife management, and recreation management options for these properties. Planning documents and contact information area available on the DNR website. - Tom Isaac, wildlife biologist, Hartford

Sturtevant DNR Service Center area

Kenosha County - Deer rutting activity seems to have increased over the last week. More and more bucks have been seen chasing does. Many sportsmen think deer hunters may see rutting activity into the nine-day gun deer season. Despite the colder temperatures the last week or two, waterfowl hunters have not reported a noticeable increase in numbers of ducks in the area. A good number of the divers that have been seen in recent weeks have seemed to migrate south. Recent rainfalls, however, have brought water levels up, significantly in some places, providing more access for hunters. - Kyle Dilley, conservation warden, Kansasville

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South Central Region

Dodgeville DNR Service Center area

Grant County - Anglers have been enjoying the nice fall weather in their pursuit of walleye, sauger bluegills and crappies. Fishing has slowed for walleye and sauger in the last week, with several small sauger being caught along the old spillway below lock and Dam 10 and Ackerman Cut. Bass anglers report catching and releasing many small bass 8-14 inches in length, fishing the area below the new spillway and along the railroad tracks below the old spillway. Several crappies were caught along the railroad bank rip rap below the old spillway using jigs and minnows. Waterfowl hunters reported many green-winged teal throughout Mississippi River Pool 11, with a few wood ducks remaining. The northern mallards have not yet arrived in any numbers, with a few small flocks seen along Jack Oak Island. The trumpeter swans have been feeding in Bode's Pond near Potosi visible from the Potosi public boat landing road as well as Highway 133. Archery hunters report the rut is well underway, and bucks have been seen at all times of the day. Motorists are advised to use caution at all hours of the day, reflected by the large number of car killed deer incidents this past week. - Richard S. DeWitte, conservation warden, Cassville

Lafayette County - Deer are in full rut and archery hunters are doing well, with a lot of big bucks being taken in the area. The ducks have slowed down considerably but some woo ducks can still be found on the smaller waterways.

- Nick Webster, conservation warden, Darlington

Deer are in full rut in Lafayette County. Lots of turkeys present. Pheasant hunting remains good. - Bruce Folley, wildlife biologist, Darlington

Fitchburg DNR Service Center area

Columbia County - This past weekend that the rut is starting and the deer are moving. The number of car-deer collisions are also on the rise, even during daylight hours. Fishing has been good as well. A few large flocks of northern ducks were also seen working the area around the French Creek Wildlife area. - Paul Nadolski, conservation warden, Portage

If you've never tried fall turkey hunting, this would be a great year to start, as wild turkeys are abundant throughout the county. Squirrels have still been very active allowing for lots of hunting opportunity as well. Trappers are reporting fairly good success, particularly for raccoons and muskrats (where they can find them). Large flocks of both mallards and sandhill cranes were observed this week in the county. - Sara Kehrli, wildlife biologist, Poynette

Dane County - Fishing in Dane County has been average. Some anglers are getting some walleyes on the Madison Lakes but they have had to work pretty hard to get them. Musky anglers have still been having a lot of success on Lakes Monona and Waubesa. Panfishing has significantly slowed down over the past couple of weeks since the temperatures have started drop. Water temperatures are continuing to drop. Boaters are reminded to use caution while boating. Make sure all passengers have the appropriate personal floatation devices in an area where they are easily accessible. It does not take very long in these water temperatures to start suffering from hypothermia. The fall hunting season is definitely in full swing with most seasons open. Waterfowl hunters in the southern area reported having some pretty good success on mallards, teal and wood ducks early and are finally starting to see some migrating ducks showing up. Finally the geese seem to be showing up more and more each day, which means the majority of the migration is not to far around the corner. The pheasant season has also been open for a little over two weeks and several hunters are out and about. Most hunters hunting public land have been having some success with stocked pheasants. Archery deer hunters have been out in full force lately with the rut nearly at its peak. In the past four days, numerous large bucks have been seen out chasing does in the middle of the day. If you are an archery hunter now is the time to get out there before it is too late. Finally with the approach of the gun deer season ALL hunters are reminded to follow the blaze orange requirements. If a gun deer season is open in an area where you are hunting any species other than waterfowl the blaze orange clothing requirements must be followed. The two groups of hunters that complain the most about this law are fall turkey hunters and deer archery hunters. This blaze orange requirement applies to them as well. - Nate Kroeplin, conservation warden, Madison

Sauk County - The deer rut is in full swing in Sauk County. There have been a number of archery hunters that have harvested large antlered bucks this past week. Archery hunters are seeing a lot of deer movement in the middle of the day. There have been some flocks of northern mallards showing up on fields in Sauk County. The walleye fishing still continues to be excellent on Lake Wisconsin and the Wisconsin River. - John Buss, conservation warden, Prairie du Sac

Deer activity to be on the increase with the bucks in rut and chasing does. People can take a drive morning day and evening to see deer activity along the roads and in the woods and fields. Drivers need to use extra caution since the deer are on the move and may unexpectedly dart out in from of vehicles. Car killed deer incidents are on the rise this past week in the Sauk County area. A large flock of turkeys have been out in the sunflower fields north of Reedsburg on Hwy. K. The flock of geese in the Reedsburg area has been hanging around still despite the cooler evening temperatures. The geese are still working the fields southwest of Reedsburg. - David Horzewski, conservation warden, Reedsburg

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West Central Region

Baldwin DNR Service Center area

Pierce County - The rut is in full swing with plenty of activity in the fall woods, bow hunters are reporting bucks chasing does in the area. Low water is still limiting access to waterfowl hunting on the Mississippi River. Low duck numbers on upper pool 4 are limiting success, the coming cold front may help move in new birds. - Brad Peterson, conservation warden, Baldwin

Willow River State Park - Work continues on the new trail and maintenance work on the existing trails is done for the moment. New gravel was laid down on the Willow Falls Trail in rough areas and gravel was added to the Burkhardt trail. There will be more work done if time allows before winter sets in. Weekday hikers may encounter the large truck on the trails hauling gravel and maybe the equipment doing the grading and spreading. The deer hunting handout is available inside the office. You can expect to find the office open on Saturdays and Sundays. Weekday office hours will vary due to other maintenance needs. The US Geological Survey has been working on the stream gauge below the Little Falls dam. When the gauge goes back on line, it will provide useful information to trout anglers and others. A volunteer reports that 31 bluebird nest boxes produced 113 bluebirds and 121 tree swallows in 2012, which is up from 2010 and 2011. - Jeffrey L. Bolte, visitor services associate

Kinnickinnic State Park - Trail work is done on what was a very steep hill on the Blue trail. This work will make foot travel on the trail much easier. The winter trail grooming equipment should be able to get up the hill, which has been impossible before the modification. Volunteers have been making some preparation for ski season. Work on the Pierce County Road F bridge across the Kinnickinnic River is expected to wrap up soon and normal traffic flow will return. This will provide easy access to the park from points south that have been cut off /detoured for much of the warm weather season. - Jeffrey L. Bolte, visitor services associate

Black River Falls DNR Service Center area

Jackson County -Jackson County ATV trails are now closed until Dec. 15 weather permitting. Numerous bucks have been observed chasing does throughout Jackson County at all hours of the day. Large numbers of grouse area still being seen by hunters scouting out their deer stands. - Jake Donar, conservation warden, Black River Falls

Eau Claire DNR Service Center area

Dunn County - Archers have been harvesting numerous large bucks during the rut. Many large groups of turkeys have been observed feeding in harvested agricultural fields. Walleye fishing on the Red Cedar River had been good, along with the occasional northern pike. Pheasant hunters have been numerous at DNR release sites. Very few ducks and waterfowl hunters have been observed. - James Cleven, conservation warden, Menomonie

Eau Claire County -The deer are really starting to move due to the rut; hunters are harvesting a lot of deer. Drivers are reminded to slow down and watch for deer crossing the highways. Trappers are targeting raccoon and mink at roadway culverts and bridges. A few anglers are still out on the Chippewa River looking for big musky. Cold weather boaters/hunters are reminded to wear a life jacket or insulated float coat. - Scott Thiede, conservation warden, Eau Claire

Wisconsin Rapids DNR Service Center area

Buckhorn State Park - Deer are starting to move with the cooler weather and many deer were seen over the weekend of the Novice Hunt. Fishing pier and boat boarding piers have been removed. Fall hunting maps for the park, Buckhorn and Yellow River Wildlife Areas are available on the park website, in the park office, and outside the office by the bulletin board in the map box. - Heather Wolf, park manager

Roche-A-Cri State Park - The main gate and campground are closed. Parking is in the winter lot and park stickers are still required. Please do not block the main gate. The stairway is open from 6 a.m. until sunset. Roche-A-Cri State Park is not open for hunting. - Heather Wolf, park manager

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Last Revised: Thursday, November 08, 2012