Online Harvest Reports Begin with Fall 2022 Deer Hunting Seasons
Last year, nearly 7,000 deer hunters voluntarily reported their deer harvest online to help test the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ new reporting system. Beginning with the fall 2022 deer season, an online harvest report is required for all hunters who successfully capture a deer.
Chad Stewart, MNR’s deer, elk and moose management specialist, said there are several reasons the department is moving to online harvest reports, but one of the most important is more data. precise.
“The declining response rate to our post-season mail surveys increases the degree of uncertainty in our harvest estimates, which may result in incorrect regulatory recommendations in some locations,” Stewart said.
Brian Frawley, the MNR wildlife biologist who manages the surveys, agrees.
“Twenty years ago, 75% of recipients responded to the survey, but in recent years we’ve seen a response rate of less than 40%,” Frawley said. “If we are going to provide hunters, wildlife managers and the Michigan Natural Resources Commission with accurate and timely data, we need to change the way we collect it.”
Hunters will have up to 72 hours after catching a deer to declare their harvest. The DNR estimates that it takes about three to five minutes to complete the report, and there are two ways to do this:
Why is a specific location important?
Hunters who cannot report their harvest due to a lack of internet access or a smart device can enlist the assistance of a family member or friend with access, by providing their number of killing permit, their date of birth and the place of harvest to report the on behalf of the hunter. Telephone reporting to the DNR is not possible due to the need for accurate harvest location data, which is provided by selecting the location on a digital map. Some hunters have expressed concern about sharing their harvest location, but Stewart stressed the confidentiality and value of this precise data and how it helps MNR and ultimately hunters.
“While we will have near real-time harvest data available to hunters throughout the season on our website, this data is at the county level,” Stewart said. “Only the DNR will have access to the GPS coordinates of the actual harvest location, which is needed for two very important reasons: more effective disease monitoring and the ability to build a network of harvest locations over time so that we can adapt management guidelines to better align with harvest figures. This means better overall management recommendations for Michigan’s deer population.
The shift to mandatory online harvest reporting, like any change, will take some time for people to settle into the Michigan hunting experience, but DNR believes the ease of reporting and the benefits of better data will outweigh any initial concerns that some may have. have. This first year will consist of familiarizing hunters with the new reporting requirement.
“Above all, we know Michigan deer hunters care about quality hunting opportunities and healthy deer herds,” Stewart said. “Each online harvest report takes only minutes, but provides vital information about hunting experiences and deer abundance across the state.”
Answers to frequently asked questions are available on the MNR website for this and other questions related to deer harvest reporting.
While hunters who tested the system last year found it to be a quick and easy process, as shown in this video, support for those experiencing technical difficulties will be available at various locations throughout state or by calling 517-284-9453 during regular business hours.
For those who also wish to commemorate the 2022 season with a deer patch, they will be available for purchase later this fall at Michigan.gov/DNRLicenses or in the DNR mobile app for $8 each, while supplies last. .
Note to editors: An accompanying photo is available below for download. Caption information follows. An online press kit includes media contacts and related quotes, photos and video clips.
- Deer: Beginning with the fall 2022 deer season, an online harvest report is required for all hunters who successfully capture a deer in Michigan.