Wisconsin DNR


The possibility of moving the state Division of Forestry to northern Wisconsin is still on the table says the author of the idea.

State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst brought up the idea a few years ago.

Tiffany says even though there is a good deal of forestry in other parts of the state, much of the forestry activity happens in the north...


Information gathered in the first season by more than 700 volunteers documenting bird breeding activity in Wisconsin found eight species nesting here that weren't found 15 years ago and range shifts in others such as the wild turkey.

Volunteers collect the data and give the results to the DNR where the "Breeding Bird Atlas" is compiled.

Atlas Coordinator Ryan Brady says the gathering is fairly straightforward..

Hunters Asked To Report Animal Sightings

Sep 9, 2015

  Hunters are heading out to the woods and fields as the fall seasons are beginning. The DNR is hoping deer hunters take a moment to record what they saw in the field.

Wildlife Research Scientist Jessica Rees Lohr says hunters become the eyes and ears in the field to report what they've seen...

"....we're doing a deer hunter wildlife survey where hunters can record their observations of deer and any wildlife while they're out hunting. This helps us keep track of population trends for Wisconsin's deer herd and other wildlife...."


  A well-known DNR biologist will be in Three Lakes this month to talk about Wisconsin’s Osprey. The Nicolet Bird Club of Three Lakes will be hosting Ron Eckstein at the Demmer Memorial Library. Vice President Les Anderson says it’s an opportunity for people to educate themselves about the Osprey and its habitat.

 “…he’s banded more than 1,500 eagles in a nest and erected more than 150 Osprey nest platforms. So he’s going to be teaching about the breeding and nesting practices of the Osprey’s and nesting sites around Three Lakes…”

DNR Seeks Input for New Bikeways

Sep 1, 2015

The DNR has scheduled a series of open forums to seek feedback about new proposed bike trails. The DNR is in collaboration with the DOT and the Wisconsin Bike Federation to identify the best routes suited for designation. The public contributed their thoughts earlier this year about where potential bike trails should be located. Now, DNR spokesperson Brigit Brown says it’s up to the public to have the final say.

Wild Rice Harvesting is Near

Aug 27, 2015

Wild rice abundance reports show that harvesting season is approaching. Labor Day often marks the harvesting season of the traditional Ojibwe food staple. DNR Habitat Specialist Jason Fleener says people take on the activity as an effort to supplement their dietary needs.

 “They’ve shown that wild rice, or true and natural wild rice has a lot more essential vitamins and minerals compared to white rice. So from a subsistence standpoint that’s very nutritious.”


The DNR is making a last push for public comment on two long term plans to manage conservation and wildlife.

DNR officials say in order to remain eligible for federal funding, they need public input on plans concerning fish and wildlife.

Spokesperson Owen Boyle says public comment will end next Sunday on the two plans...


The DNR owns and maintains thousands of miles of roads and is required to inventory and map all roads.

The DNR is seeking feedback regarding general considerations used to evaluate motorized road access.

DNR land representative Aaron Buchholz says when the process is done, the public will have a clearer idea about these roads...


Wisconsin law orders drivers to move over to protect emergency responders at crash scenes or if law enforcement is talking to a driver. Now the law has been expanded to protect law enforcement on our waters.

DNR boating administrator, Warden Roy Zellmer,  outlines what the change enacted this year means for Wisconsin boaters...

"....they will be required to either give way 100 feet or slow to a slow-no wake-speed for emergency vessels that are on the water and have their emergency lights or siren activated...."

  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.

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A proposed rule allowing motor trolling on all state inland waters is not likely to be ready for the opening day of fishing on May 2.

DNR Fisheries Management Specialist Tim Simonson says all the legislature still needs to act...

"....it's probably not going to be in effect given the timelines for the legislative review. It's probably going to be at the very earliest mid to late May...."

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Persons working in the woods might see an easier time getting a temporary permit to cross a public waterway. The DNR has opened a comment period on the permit changes.

DNR specialist Martin Griffin says people doing forest management would be affected. He says the proposed temporary in-stream crossing general permit modifies existing standards for temporary structures and allows for placement of additional types of crossings....



Starting later this year there will be some changes for snowmobile registration in Wisconsin.

DNR Administrator Gary Eddy..


".....that will go from $30 every two years to $30 every three years and in addition to that, all snowmobiles operating in Wisconsin will be required to display an annual Wisconsin trail pass. That is separate from your registration...."

Wisconsin DNR

Minocqua is one site of three picked by the DNR to get public input on proposed rules to limit the number of panfish taken on 110 lakes, including many in the Northwoods.

Fisheries Manager Section Chief Steve Hewett says the proposed regulations include on some lakes, anglers could keep 25 panfish, but no more than 10 of one species..another option is 15 total fish, but no more than 5 of any species, or 25 but no more than five could be over 7 inches.
Hewett says fishing pressure on the easier-to-catch panfish has led them to notice a trend..

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While wet conditions continue from a snowy winter and a cold, wet spring, a DNR ranger says don't be lulled into thinking the fire danger isn't there.

DNR Forester/Ranger John Gillen in Rhinelander says the time prior to 'green up' or the time prior to plants having new leaves, is a time when fire danger can be high. Even though it's been damp, he says things can change quickly...