Northwest Minnesota wolf harvest well below quota

With two days left in the early wolf season, hunters in northwest Minnesota had killed 52 wolves as of Friday afternoon, shy of the 73-wolf target quota.

The Northeast Wolf Zone closed when the harvest reach 31, a mere two wolves short of the 33-wolf quota.

The late season, which also allows trapping, opens Nov. 30 and continues through Jan. 31 or when the season’s targets of 145 in the northwest and 65 in the northeast are reached.

The DNR offered 3,300 wolf licenses this year, down from 6,000 last year, and the statewide harvest quota is 220, down from 400 last year.

DNR reports 6 percent drop in deer harvest

The preliminary numbers are in, and Minnesota hunters have killed 6 percent fewer deer through the second weekend of this year’s firearms deer season than during the same time last year, the Department of Natural Resources reported Wednesday.

According to the DNR, Minnesota hunters shot 128,814 deer through the second weekend of the season. Overall, hunters had killed 7 percent fewer antlered bucks and 5 percent fewer antlerless deer.

The state’s firearms deer season ended Sunday for all but northeast Minnesota, where the season ends this coming Sunday. A late firearm season in southeast Minnesota begins Saturday and concludes Dec. 1.

“Based on our population estimates, the decrease in buck harvest was not anticipated and may reflect hunting conditions more than population,” said Leslie McInenly, DNR big game program leader. “Based on the preliminary numbers, our opening and second weekend harvests from Saturday to Monday were down 4 and 13 percent, respectively, and we experienced windy conditions the first weekend and both wind and rain the second weekend.”

Personally, the decline in hunting success doesn’t surprise me in the least, based on the  reports  I’ve gotten from other hunters. Almost to a person, the hunters I’ve talked to in northwest Minnesota have said this was one of the  quietest deer seasons they can ever remember.


‘Give to the Max Day’ in Minnesota

Today is “Give to the Max Day” in Minnesota, and organizations across the state are asking people to donate to their favorite nonprofit groups and schools.

For hunters and anglers, that means conservation groups such as Pheasants Forever, the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association and the Izaak Walton League, among others.

From midnight to 11:59 p.m. today, for example, every donation to the MDHA gives the deer hunting group a chance to receive even more money through $1,000 “Golden Ticket” lottery drawings.

And at the end of the day, one donation from across Minnesota will be randomly selected for a $10,000 Super Sized Golden Ticket, MDHA said in a press release.

“Give to the Max” donations, regardless of the nonprofit, are 100 percent tax deductable.

“I have never liked asking anyone for money, but we need your donations,” Barry Drazkowski, president of the Minnesota Division of the Izaak Walton League of America, said in a statement. “We have a big job today and we cannot do it without your generous support.

“Please consider making a generous donation on Give to the Max Day. … There is no better investment than our children’s future enjoyment of Minnesota’s soil, air, woods, waters and wildlife.”

For more info, go to