DNR lifts deer feeding ban in some counties, imposes new ban in others to control CWD

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is lifting deer feeding and attracting bans in 24 counties while imposing them in 23 others, including five that were added Monday.

Officials say this is to focus restrictions on areas that have the highest risk of chronic wasting disease (CWD).

The counties with newly imposed feeding and attractant bans include Beltrami, Carver, Itasca, Le Suer and Sibley counties.

Feeding and attractant bans remain in place in Cass, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Hennepin, Houston, Hubbard, Mower, Norman, Olmsted, Polk, Rice, Scott, Wabasha, Washington and Winona counties.

Feeding and attractant bans are lifted in Aitkin, Carlton, Chisago, Clearwater, Douglas, Freeborn, Isanti, Kanabec, Koochiching, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Pennington, Pine, Pope, Ramsey, Red Lake, Roseau, Stearns, Steele, Todd and Wadena counties.

DNR Big Game Program Coordinator Todd Froberg said in a news release that “The DNR uses feeding and attractant bans as a tool to reduce unnatural crowding of deer and reduce the risk of exposure to CWD. We are using these tools where we think they will provide the greatest potential to benefit the health of Minnesota‚Äôs white-tailed deer. This approach limits CWD risk and helps reinforce the connection feeding and using attractants have on the risk of spreading disease.”

More information from the DNR, including a list and map of counties affected by feeding and attractant bans, can be found on their website.

Other information from the DNR on how to improve private land for the benefit of deer and other wildlife can be found by CLICKING HERE.

Agency officials add the public isn’t encouraged to feed deer. Anyone who wants to help deer, especially during severe winter conditions, is advised to focus their effort on “improving habitat during the growing season to provide long-term food resources and shelter that deer can reliably find year-after-year.”