Natural Resources

Firewood cutters welcomed
4:22 am
Mon September 22, 2014

CNNF Looking For Help Clearing Trees From Trails

The Sept. 4 storm caused significant tree damage to Moose Lake Campground north of Loretta, Wi.
Credit CNNF

The severe storm earlier this month did significant damage to some of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and officials are hoping the public could help clean up.

Forest spokesperson Hilary Markin says firewood cutting permits are part of the routine offerings in the national forest. She says a special opportunity is being offered to permit holders...

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Repair road to popular destination
2:55 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Kentuck Lake Road Closed By USFS On Monday

A lake in Vilas county

The Kentuck Lake Campground and boat landing located in Vilas County near the town of Alvin will be closed beginning Monday, September 22.

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest spokesperson Hilary  Markin says they're closing the road and boat dock  to fix some nasty potholes...

".....we anticipate that closure to last about three days so hopefully we're not impacting any weekend visitors just during the week. We're going to be working on the roadway trying to make that a safer travel way for visitors...."

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Working With Limited Resources
11:44 am
Wed September 17, 2014

USFS Looks For Outside Help With Timber Sales

The forest products industry has criticized the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest for not meeting timber harvest goals set forth in its 10-year forest plan.
Credit US Forest Service

Managers of the Chequamegon-Nicolet want to partner with other groups to help achieve timber harvest goals in the national forest.  That’s the message from Forest Supervisor Paul Strong.   

He’s part of a newly formed partnership called the Northeast Wisconsin Forestry Improvement Collaborative that represents logging groups, manufacturers and environmental interests. 

Strong says the hope is that different organizations can help the Forest Service obtain grant money, organize volunteers, or even resolve disagreements. 

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Wildlife Matters with Jeremy Holtz
4:00 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Is It Raining Rattlesnakes? Debunking a Myth of Turkey Control

Credit Kristie Gianopulos /

In the years I have worked for the Department of Natural Resources, one of the most common tales I hear repeated involves dropping rattlesnakes from helicopters to control turkey populations. Some of you are convinced this happens; others frankly find the idea absurd. However, I have to field this question, or accusation, a few times every year, so I thought I would explore the topic in further detail.

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Changes Taking Effect
1:50 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Archery Season Set to Open Will Be Buck-Only For Many

Dear season opens for archers and crossbow hunters Saturday, September 13th.
Credit Michele Woodford / Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

As deer hunters know well, the archery season opens Saturday in Wisconsin.

It will be a unique deer hunting season with a set of new regulations in place, and buck-only hunts in most northern counties.

Deer hunters may face some adjustments when they head out into the woods this weekend. 

As DNR Warden Supervisor Dave Walz explains, a variety of changes are taking effect thanks to the deer trustee rule package.  For one, deer management units now tend to follow county lines, instead of highway or river boundaries like they often did before. 

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Short-lived Tree Species Need Management
7:08 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Agencies Look to Young Forest Species to Provide Wildlife Habitat

The American woodcock is one species researchers say benefits from young forest types, along with ruffed grouse and the golden-winged warbler.

A group of natural resource organizations wants to work with landowners to create more habitat for species like the American woodcock and the golden winged warbler.

The Young Forest Partnership includes the Wisconsin DNR, the American Bird Conservancy and several other groups.

The Partnership wants help landowners with the cost of shearing or harvesting aspen and tag alder, to encourage those short-lived species to regenerate and stay on the landscape.

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Inventory of Invasives
4:11 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Monitors Check Bridges as Potential Aquatic Invasive Hotspots

Purple loosestrife and other invasive species are the targets of a survey of bridges this weekend.
Credit Stefan Czapski /

Volunteers in the Northwoods will be visiting bridges this Saturday…and taking an inventory of aquatic invasives they find.

Oneida County Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator Michele Sadauskus says they’ll canvass several areas to get a count of what species are present at different bridges.

“We’re hoping not to find anything new.  A lot of these areas don’t have a lot of information or data collected on them.  So we’re going into a lot of these areas with a fresh look at them.” 

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Tracking a Spreading Bat Disease
5:22 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

White Nose Finding Isolated, DNR Confirms

White nose syndrome is named for the characteristic white fungus found on affected bats' faces and bodies.
Credit Marvin Moriarty / US Fish and Wildlife Service

Wisconsin’s first evidence of the bat disease white nose syndrome was restricted to a single site, the DNR confirms.

The state agency has finished testing samples taken earlier this year from caves where bats hibernate. 

The Grant County location that tested positive for white nose syndrome was the only one that did. 

As DNR Natural Heritage Conservation Director Erin Crain explains…the agency prioritizes testing samples where white nose is suspected.

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Questioning Mine Safety, Accountability
4:55 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

Plaintiffs to Pay Mining Company Court Fees After Environmental Dispute

A Duluth woman is raising money to offset court costs that she’s being asked to pay on behalf of a mining company. 

Laura Gouger says she and two other plaintiffs have to pay more than $60,000 of the opposing side’s legal fees…after losing a case they brought against the Flambeau Mining Company. 

“I’m very disappointed.  I would say that mining companies are not held accountable for polluting public waters.”

The Flambeau mine near Ladysmith was an open pit copper and gold mine that operated between 1991 and 1999. 

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Water Levels Already High
4:02 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Rainy Forecast Prompts River Flooding Worries

As seen from Rhinelander's Davenport Street Bridge, water levels on the Wisconsin River have been higher than usual after heavy rains.
Credit Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

We’re still drying out from last week’s storm…and another is on its way.

The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch for Tuesday night through Wednesday night. 

Water levels on the Wisconsin River are already elevated from last week’s rainfall. 

The Wisconsin Valley Improvement Company has been releasing water from many of its reservoirs.

As Operations Manager Peter Hansen explains, rainfall reports Thursday and Friday ranged from2.5  to 6 inches. 

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