Hunting seasons ready to begin

Hunters can now have their deer checked in the Reed City area.
Hunters can now have their deer checked in the Reed City area.

CADILLAC — Wildlife technicians like northern Michigan’s Katie Keen realize this is a major time of the season for hunting.

It especially is the case when whitetail deer are involved.

“Our seasons are starting so quickly,” she said. “Midland has an earlier antlerless season. Early antlerless is not open everywhere. It’s private land only.”

Hunters are advised to check with the DNR’s hunting digest via the booklet or on line to verify the exact information for antlerless seasons.

The Liberty Hunt is this Saturday and Sunday for youth and hunters with disabilities.

“The Liberty Hunt is statewide and is on private and pubic lands,” Keen said. “You can have kids or hunters with disabilities out with firearms hunting on public or private lands. The early antlerless is just on private and just in a few locations.”

The deer herd is considered generally to be healthy this year.

Hunters are encouraged to take their deer to various DNR check stations across the state.

Friday marks the opening day for small game hunting.

“The grouse season opens. We are on the upward side of the trend,” Keen said. “Birds should be on that better than last year type trend. We’re going back up.

“Midland County and north tends to be where more birds are and there’s better habitat and that sort of thing. You have to get to the northern part of the mitt for that to start happening.

“Woodcock season opens a little bit later (Sept. 23). You have to have a free woodcock stamp for that, while for grouse, all you need is your basic license.”

Bear season is Sept. 18-25 for hunters with licenses in the Baldwin Unit, which include Clare, Isabella and Midland counties.

“There will be more hunters out this year because there were more licenses,” Keen said.