September 18, 2008
Update: Legislators Look To Lift Michigan Bait Ban; State Holds It’s Ground
By Scott Bestul
From the Detroit Free Press:
A trio of state lawmakers called on DNR Director Rebecca Humphries to rescind a ban on deer baiting in the Lower Peninsula that was enacted in response to an outbreak of Chronic Wasting Disease on a game farm in Kent County.
State Reps. Jeff Mayes, D-Bay City, and Joel Sheltrown, D-West Branch, along with state Sen. James Barcia, D-Bay City, said the economic impact on the growers of bait crops could be devastating, and that reductions in the deer harvest by hunters who stay home rather than go into the field without bait could actually contribute to the spread of the disease (as larger herds congregate).
And from an AP story on Mlive.com:
Michigan wildlife officials Wednesday stood behind their decision to ban deer baiting in the Lower Peninsula despite pressure from a few lawmakers. . . .
The DNR said in a statement the ban will help preserve a healthy deer herd. Disease can be spread through deer saliva and other secretions. The DNR said congregating deer at bait sites increases the chances of spreading disease.