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Hunters head for deer camp


KALAMAZOO (WKZO) -- Michigan's firearm deer hunting season is underway and the Department of Natural Resources the sales of permits shows it is still a popular sport.

"Just a couple of days ago, we already had 540,000 folks buy a license for this year," the DNR's Brent Rudolph tells WKZO. "That was up a little bit from the year before."

Rudolph said hunters will likely see some effects of the EHD outbreak in the area, though it may depend on where they choose to hunt.

"It's so highly concentrated, where they die-offs occur, even a little bit away [from a chosen location], people might not notice any difference at all" in the deer population, he said.

A record number of deer have been killed by EHD this year.

The DNR believes the spread of EHD is minimized now that colder temperatures are settling in during the evenings, which hampers the life span of the midge, which transmits the disease to deer.

The disease does not affect humans or household pets.

The DNR reminds hunters there are certain rules they should follow when participating in firearm season.

"Back in the day, if [the property] was not posted, you could go out," Rudolph said. "Today, you need the permission of the property owner."

Of course, hunters could choose to hunt on state land.

"We have quite a few...state game areas, which are state hunting lands, in southern Michigan, so there's lots of opportunity," Rudolph said.

Firearm deer season ends at the end of November.

To hear the whole Rudolph interview from The Lori Moore Show, click here.