1. “We’ve lost thousands of dollars in food and liquor sales,” said Lisa Wynn, a cook at Harryz Boondocks in the Jefferson County hamlet of Hubbleton, just off of Highway 19 midway between Waterloo and Watertown. “We don’t have as many hunters coming in or people coming in to just look at the deer. Now, they shoot a deer and go home and mow the lawn or something.”
2. At the Schellter Bar & Grill in Leland, a farming community near Natural Bridge State Park and about 14 miles west of Prairie du Sac, LeRoy and Connie Schell (saw it this way), “I don’t like the fact that they messed with the tradition of the nine-day hunt and the registration but we still have people coming in and showing their deers off, even if they’re not in the contest.”
3. Mike Meixelsperger of Plain who works in information technology, said he understands why the registration change was made but says the system is still more difficult than in-person registration. “It was easy just to come in and the guys here would come out, check everything out for you and you were done,” Meixelsperger said. “It has totally wrecked the experience.”
4. Emil Diehl, who has owned the bar for 38 years, said “I’d say our business is down 40 percent.”
In the DNR’s words, the new rules change the “season framework, management units and antlerless deer hunting permits.” Gone are “management zones” setting deer overwinter population goals. Gone are free tags & $2 tags in highly populated or CWD areas; gone are landowner deer tags … gone is registering your deer at the local bar or convenience store. Tags are more expensive (6 times more expensive), limited, and depend on whether you hunt a private or public area.
Steve Hanson: “I'm not a hunter, but I own property on which others hunt. I have to admit to being TOTALLY bamboozled by how complex the new rules are. And the folks hunting here are just as bewildered.”
A former liberal radio talk host who likes to ask the “follow-up question” at Democurmudgeon.blogspot.com