Contact(s): Bill Cosh, DNR communications director, 608-267-2773
Jim Dick, DATCP communications director, 608-224-5020
MADISON - A proposal to modify Wisconsin's captured wildlife laws and policy is ready for review. It comes after Gov. Scott Walker called on the secretaries of the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection to examine the current laws and policy.
The proposed changes that will go before the Natural Resources Board in September include:
"Removing illegally-held wildlife takes an emotional toll on those holding the animal as well as those whose job it is to enforce the law," said DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp. "Ideas and opinions from citizens of this state, along with sound science, shape our natural resource laws and policies. I look forward to working with policy makers to improve the way Wisconsin manages wildlife."
"We at the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection believe these policy changes, with respect to the capture of wild deer, will not only help difuse future situations but will protect the state's $35-billion dollar livestock industry from diseases such as TB and the spread of CWD, something our agency takes very seriously," said DATCP Secretary Ben Brancel. "We hope the legislature will move forward to address these recommendations. It is important to remember that any interstate movement of wild deer would continue to be a federal violation under the Lacey Act. A Wisconsin rehabilitator should not accept a wild deer that was imported illegally."
The proposal is not designed to encourage individuals to take animals from the wild, stressed Secretary Stepp. For example, fawns often appear to be abandoned when, in reality, their mothers are finding food nearby. Wild animals should always be left in the wild.