MADISON, Wis. (WSAU) - The start of the bow deer hunt is also the start of the Department of Natural Resources annual wildlife survey.
Survey manager Brian Dhuey says this is an integral part of the DNR's data collection. "What this helps us do is index some of the species that are secretive and hard to survey. It also helps us get a feel of what hunters are seeing in the woods while pursuing deer."
Dhuey says it's real easy to fill out the survey. "They just have to record the time they go, the unit and the county and the time they spend, then record the type of wildlife they see." While the primary data collected is used in tallying deer populations in the state, the survey also tracks game birds, other wildlife and animals that the DNR wants to keep a running total on.
While the survey can be filled out online or on a smart device, Dhuey says they've stuck to the analog roots of the survey. "You can just go and print out a sheet, there's instructions on the tally sheet and you can mail it in when you're done."
This year 17,000 deer hunters were selected at random and sent a letter inviting them to participate in Deer Hunter Wildlife Survey. However, if you were not one of the hunters selected to participate, you can still take part by filling out a survey. We've got a copy attached on this story.