Natural Resources

Some Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest recreational opportunities will be curtailed this year due to tighter budgets. But a spokesperson says the most popular attractions will continue as before. They also want to find out what the public wants for recreation.

Spokesperson Hilary Markin says the majority of visitors will see recreation sites at full service levels. Costs have risen while the number of forest users has dropped. She says about 11 percent of recreational offerings will see less service..

State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst, and Representatives Rob Swearingen of Rhinelander and Jeff Mursau of Crivitz Wednesday issued a statement following a recent announcement that about 11 percent of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest recreation areas will either be closed or have reduced services.

Tiffany says if the state was given the authority to manage the forest, they would use the increased timber production to fund recreation...

County Deer Advisory Councils are preparing final antlerless quota and permit recommendations during the last round of spring meetings next week.

The councils were established by the state in every county to provide guidance to the DNR on deer issues.

The councils first met last month and a comment period ended Wednesday.

DNR big game section chief Bob Nack says the input will help the DNR set deer quotas...

  Mike Vogelsang has been named north district fisheries supervisor for the DNR.

Vogelsang brings some 24 years of fisheries management experience with DNR to his new role. Vogelsang has served as leader of the headwaters fish team based in Woodruff since 2001.

Vogelsang's supervisory role now covers from Florence County in the northeast to Bayfield County in the north to St. Croix County farther west.  He will remain based in Woodruff and will start his new position on April 19.

Several years ago groups noticed the Northwoods has a large number of research organizations, both in the public and private sectors. This began the annual Northwoods Research Summit, held at UWSP  Treehaven near Tomahawk. This year the annual Summit is set for April 23 and will focus on our water resources.

Summit spokesperson Dan Kuzlik.......

It's Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week in Wisconsin. Each April, state emergency management sets aside the week to get people thinking about how to prepare for a weather emergency.

Locally, Dawn Robinson from Oneida County Emergency Management says you should be ready to go if severe weather threatens...

" this is a good time for everyone to look at their plans and practice what it is that they learned..."

If approved, veterans will have exclusive access to 225 acres of the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest for accessible trails and hunting opportunities.

A public meeting is set for Thursday to get public comment on the amendment to the Forest Master Plan.

Forest superintendent Steve Petersen says Camp American Legion in Lake Tomahawk serves veterans and families who have medical needs. He says the Camp would like to provide other programming for their veterans...

The DNR's Spring Fish and Wildlife Public Hearings happen Monday in all of Wisconsin's 72 counties.  One topic area  is likely to draw considerable discussion.

DNR fisheries biologist Jon Hansen says they're studying 100 lakes...many in this look at putting tighter restrictions on panfish to see if larger fish can be grown.....

"....we're interested in trying three different options for bag limits. We have an elaborate evaluation plan that we are going to evaluate over the next 10 years...".

Despite patches of snow on the ground, it is spring, and Eagle River’s Olson Memorial Library is celebrating the season on Saturday with the launch of its Seed Library. WXPR’s Emily Bright reports.

The state Natural Resources Board has implemented  a plan supporting a five year catch-and-release only walleye fishery on the Minocqua and Tomahawk chain of lakes. The plan was brought forward by Northwoods angling groups, community leaders and Chippewa tribal leaders with support from DNR as part of a plan to restore natural walleye reproduction. The Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa  agreed not to harvest these lakes during the rehabilitation plan.