Michigan’s firearm deer hunting season begins on Nov. 15, but a member of the state’s Natural Resources Commission is suggesting it start a weekend early, and reasons are all economic.
Instead of starting Nov. 15 every year, Frank Wheatlake is asking the state Department of Natural Resource to consider a weekend start for the season, which brings out 750,000 hunters each year.
“These are trying times,” said Wheatlake, a Big Rapids resident and a commission member since 2001.
Another weekend would give hunters more time to get their deer, more days to mentor young hunters and perhaps, more venison in the freezer, he said. More hunters also means more dollars in the state fund that underwrites other hunting, fishing and outdoor activities, he said.
But others say Wheatlake is messing with tradition and nature by suggesting the DNR change the day most hunters take to the woods.
“I think the hunting experience has to be more than convenience,” said Gordon Pickerd, treasurer of the Rockford Sportsman’s Club. “If you truly want the hunting experience, it comes with limitations and a few hardships.”
If you had the power to alter the dates of a deer hunt in your neck of the woods, would you do so? Or would you let tradition stand?