Phone format to replace semi-annual deer open houses
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources invites the public to talk with DNR staff about deer on Wednesday, March 31. From noon until 8 p.m. on that day, wildlife managers throughout the state will be available to discuss deer-related topics with anyone who gives them a call.
“Since we’re unable to host our biannual open houses in person, due to COVID-19, we’re opening up our phone lines instead,” said Barbara Keller, the DNR’s big game program leader. “No matter where you are in Minnesota, we’ll have a wildlife manager standing by who can take your call and answer your questions about deer.”
People who would like to participate should visit the deer open house webpage to find the telephone number for their area wildlife manager. Area managers always welcome calls from the public, so people who can’t call during the dedicated open house time are encouraged to do so at their convenience.
The DNR began holding deer open houses in 2018 with the release of its statewide deer management plan. They have continued twice a year as a way to encourage discussions about deer and deer management, enhance local relationships, and foster two-way communication between the DNR and the public.
Additional opportunities for deer input
This year’s phone call substitute is one of many opportunities for people to get involved with the deer season-setting process. Right now, the DNR is in the midst of revisiting long-term deer population goals, which happens every decade. This year’s process focuses on deer population goals in areas of southwest and northeast Minnesota.
From Monday, March 15 through Friday, March 26, people interested in these particular areas can provide comment on final goals. Details, including how to participate, are listed on the DNR’s deer goal-setting webpage.