Night deer hunting court hearing continues

by The Northwestern  |  published on December 14, 2012

night deer hunting

Wisconsin’s Chippewa bands are trying to convince a federal judge hunting wolves at night is more dangerous than hunting deer after dark.

Lac de Flambeau attorney Colette Routel got Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources hunting safety expert Tim Lawhern to testify during a hearing Thursday that shining deer makes them freeze in place and easy to kill, but wolves flee when exposed to light at night.

The Chippewa have authorized tribal hunters to go after deer at night in response to the state’s new wolf hunt. The DNR has asked U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb to rule that the state’s longstanding prohibition on night deer hunting extends to the tribes.

The hearing was expected to conclude later Thursday.

The organization that oversees the Chippewa’s off-reservation rights last month quietly authorized tribal hunters to hunt at night, known as shining.

The state Department of Natural Resources has banned night deer hunting for decades out of safety concerns.

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