DNR Lifts Northwest Deer Feeding Ban; MDHA Deer Feed Update

It hasn’t been widely publicized, but the Department of Natural Resources lifted the deer-feeding ban in northwest Minnesota on Feb. 15.

Imposed in November 2006 to help prevent the spread of bovine tuberculosis after its discovery in 2005 near Skime, Minn., the ban covered a 4,000-square-mile area of northwest Minnesota.

Despite lifting the ban, the DNR opted against authorizing state-sponsored deer feeding in northwest Minnesota this winter for fear that artificially drawing deer into close contact could increase the risk of transmitting any TB that might still be out there. The DNR declared the area TB-free in February 2013 after three years of extensive testing failed to find any new positive cases.

MDHA begins northeast effort
In related feeding news, the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association’s feeding effort in northeast Minnesota now is underway, and MDHA sent out a news release this afternoon with the following days and times it will be distributing feed in that part of the state:

Esko: (Widdes Feeds) 8 a.m.-noon.
Moose Lake: (Moose Lake Co-op) 1-5 p.m.

Hibbing: (Hibbing Feed & Seed) 1-5 p.m.
Grand Rapids: (Itasca Co. Farm Service) 1-5 p.m.

International Falls: (Up North Builders) 9-11:30 a.m.
Cook: (Homestead Mills) 1 to 3:30 p.m.

Wright: (Farmers Co-op Feed Mill) 8 a.m.-noon.
Virginia: (New London Warehouse) 1-5 p.m.

MDHA also issued these reminders in relation to its northeast Minnesota deer feeding effort:

* To receive feed you must have a known feeding area on PUBLIC LAND, and know approximately how many deer are on that area. We will get all needed documentation at the time of distribution.
* You DO NOT need to be a member of MDHA to receive feed. (But we would love to have you join us!)
* We will have only half a semi load available at each distribution location for the first week, so we will be giving out feed conservatively to try to reach as many locations as possible.
*Deer feed will only be available from us during the posted distribution days and times, as specific documentation needs to be collected and provided to the DNR for reimbursement of the funds.
For the most up to date information, click here.