Have you ever wanted to see a real Michigan wolverine? Or maybe learn how to age the deer you harvested?
The Department of Natural Resources invites the public to an open house on Thursday, Nov. 8 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Carl T. Johnson Hunt and Fish Center, located at 6093 E. M-115 in Cadillac. DNR staff members from the Cadillac area – including the local wildlife biologist, a conservation officer and area foresters – will be on hand to talk to attendees.
The open house gives area residents an opportunity to discuss the on-the-ground management that is happening on public land in their area. Current plans entail harvest of aspen acreage to provide young forest habitat for grouse, woodcock, many songbirds and white-tail deer, along with regneration of approximately 660 acres of oak to provide future acorn crops, and planting of 120 acres of rye and alfalfa for wildlife.
Wildlife habitat work will be completed through commercial timber sales, where loggers will pay for the wood they harvest. The result will create improved habitat for wildlife and for hunters looking for game, said Forest Resources Division Cadillac Unit Manager Dave Fisher, adding that continuing to maintain aspen and oak on the landscape is a top priority.
“This is a win-win situation,” Fisher said. “We have a valuable renewable resource in an area that benefits wildlife, hunters and local communities.”
With the firearm deer season right around the corner, this open house also gives hunters a chance to stop in and talk with deer biologist Ashley Autenrieth — who will be available to “talk deer” — and to speak with local DNR land managers, who can advise where great public land hunting opportunities can be found.
Hunters can also bring in the deer or deer head they have harvested to receive a 2012 Successful Deer Hunter Cooperator patch, and DNR staffers will collect valuable biological data from the deer. At the same time, hunters can learn the tricks for how to age deer themselves and take home how-to materials.
“We encourage you to stop in and bring your family,” said wildlife technician Katie Keen. “See what is happening on public land in your county, have your deer aged, and tour the spectacular Carl T. Johnson center.”
For more information about the open house, contact Katie Keen at 231-775-9727. For details about the Carl T. Johnson Hunt and Fish Center, including a map and directions, visit www.michigan.gov/huntfishcenter.