A managed hunt this weekend is helping with an over-populated deer area in the City of Eau Claire. Youth hunters and hunters with disabilities were out in the woods to try and help manage that deer population. Fox 25/48’s Neil Hebert was there and spoke with the hunters about their experience.
Fifty-four deer per square mile in the City of Eau Claire’s Well Fields is a high number, especially when the city says 10-15 deer per acre is socially tolerable. So, the Eau Claire archers and the City of Eau Claire got together and decided to try and help out, while helping some get their bows out.
“She’s been hunting with her dad pretty much her whole life. So, being out in a blind isn’t new for Josie, but being out where she can actually walk out and be more independent doing it is a great experience for Josie and for myself.”
Another hunter, Jesse Meyer, who uses a wheelchair and came in from the Madison area, the experience of getting to hang out with his cousin from Eau Claire makes the hunt worthwhile.
“When they put on a hunt like this, it’s nice because it’s harder for people in wheelchairs and disabilities to be able to get out and hunt like that.”
The hunt also allows Brian Bertrang from Strum to just hunt and not worry about things he’d normally have to.
“For me, I don’t have very many places accessible to go out on hunts like this, so having a nice road like this and be able to go out on the trail, it’s very easy walking and I don’t have to worry about getting hurt getting into the blind and getting set up.”
Even though the main objective is to get a deer, a big catch for the hunters is the camaraderie with the other hunters and the experience itself.
“Watching the excitement on my daughter’s face when these deer came through, watching her shaking and all that, it just makes it all worth it. Just being out in the woods with my daughter; that’s what I live for.”
The DNR issued 16 tags total for the hunters.
The Eau Claire archers think if the hunt goes well it would be a practical to do again in the years to come.
In Eau Claire, Neil Hebert, Fox 25/48 News at Nine
The managed hunt continues tomorrow and next weekend in Eau Claire.