FWCC Seeks Public Input on Deer Management in the Panhandle
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWCC) announces a series of public meetings on deer management in the Florida Panhandle to which all persons are invited.
Times and Locations:
January 29th, 2013, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at the Jackson County Agricultural Conference Center, 2741 Pennsylvania Avenue, Marianna, FL 32448
January 30th, 2013, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at the Burns Building Auditorium, Florida Department of Transportation, 605 Suwannee Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0450
January 31st, 2013, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at the University of West Florida, Commons Auditorium, 11000 University Parkway, Pensacola, FL 32514
Two separate “Deer Management Units” (DMUs) are proposed for the Panhandle, one unit would cover the area south of Interstate 10 and the other would be north of I-10. The new DMUs are intended to allow FWC more flexibility with deer management based upon the deer population, habitat conditions, and public preference within each of the units. At the meeting, the plans for DMUs will be explained and all persons present will have an opportunity to provide input. We seek public comment in order to determine if the plans for the DMUs have the support of the public. In particular, we need to learn if members of the public are happy with the number of deer that live in their area, are happy with the current hunting regulations or if they seek changes.
In addition to public meetings, FWC has completed a statewide survey on their DMU plans and has received close to 5,000 responses from hunters, farmers and residents. For people who cannot attend any of the meetings, there will be follow-up opportunities to join a conference call to make comments on the plans. Following public comment, a Technical Advisory Group (TAG) will be established and will meet for further consideration and direct input into the new plan. Twenty to twenty five TAG members will be chosen based upon their expertise, their representation of an important interest group and their willingness to serve. All persons interested will be able to apply to become a TAG member at the public meetings.
More information about the proposed DMUs, the TAG and a meeting agenda may be obtained at http://myfwc.com/hunting/by-species/deer/dmu/.
The public meetings will be coordinated by staff of Normandeau Associates. FWC staff members will be present to provide detailed information, to answer questions and to assist with running the meeting.
For more information, you may contact: Cory Morea of the FWC at (850) 617-9487 or Peter Colverson of Normandeau Associates in Gainesville at (352) 327-3270