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Public welcome at elk management plan public hearing Nov. 9

From Michigan Department of Natural Resources

-- Public comment on a draft elk management plan intended to guide department direction for the next decade is welcome at 7 p.m. meeting  Nov. 9, at the Eagles Club in Gaylord, 515 S. Wisconsin St.

Public participation and comment is important to the success and implementation of the management plan. "This plan refocuses our efforts on the geographical area where we have elk, want to have elk and the habitat management we'll do in that area," said Brian Mastenbrook, wildlife biologist. "We're managing elk for everyone, not just hunters, but people who like to view elk, as well. Hunting will still be our main population management tool."

The plan does not outline operational details of elk management. The plan provides strategic guidance for the management of elk in Michigan.

The first goal is to manage for a sustainable elk population in balance with the habitat.  The elk population will be monitored, as well as their health and habitat.  The second goal uses hunting as the primary method to control elk numbers, and aims to facilitate good interactions among hunters, the Department, private land owners and hunting guides.  The third primary goal encourages an enhancement of public understanding relating to elk management in Michigan.

The Department plans to coordinate with partners to provide consistent and accurate information concerning elk management to the public.

The full draft plan can be accessed on the DNR website at www.michigan.gov/hunting then select Elk. Those unable to attend the Nov. 9 meeting can direct written comments via email to Brian Mastenbrook at mastenbrookb@michigan.gov.

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