Order of the State of Wisconsin Natural Resources Board
Amending and Creating Rules
The statement of scope for this rule, SS 025-13, was approved by the Governor on March 6, 2013, published in Register No. 687 on March 31, 2013 and approved by the Natural Resources Board on April 24, 2013. This permanent rule was approved by the Governor on March 22, 2017. The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board proposes an order to repeal Ch. NR 16.30 (9) (b) 3. and 4.; and to amend NR 10.001 (5v), 10.40 (3) (a) 1. and (e), 11.10 (intro) and (note), 16.30 (9) (b), and 16.30 (9) (c); and to create NR 10.105 (j), administrative rules relating to hunting, trapping, closed areas, nuisance wildlife management and captive wildlife.
Analysis Prepared by the Department of Natural Resources
Statutory Authority and Explanation of Agency Authority: The chapter on wild animals and plants, in s. 29.014, “rule making for this chapter”, establishes that the department shall maintain open and closed seasons for fish and game and any limits, rest days, and conditions for taking fish and game. This grant of rule-making authority allows the department to make changes related to taking of unprotected species, movement of deer waste, the administration of deer hunts, legal trap types, and waterfowl hunting hours and season dates. The establishment of game refuges is authorized in s. 23.09(2)(b) relating to the department’s ability to designate locations reasonably necessary for the purpose of providing safe retreats in which birds may rest and replenish adjacent hunting grounds. The department’s authority to authorize the removal of nuisance animals, such as monk parrots, is established in s. 29.885 (2). The establishment of rules for the housing of captive wildlife is authorized in s. 169.39(3) which directs the department to promulgate rules pertaining to the specifications for enclosures. Statutes Interpreted and Explanation: The chapter on wild animals and plants, in ss. 29.014, “rule making for this chapter”, establishes that the department shall maintain open and closed seasons for fish and game and any limits, rest days, and conditions for taking fish and game. This grant of rule-making authority allows the department to make changes related to trapping methods and times and the seasons for taking game and furbearing animals. Other statutes interpreted include ss. 23.09 (2) (b) and 169.39 (3). Related Statute or Rule: Under provisions of 2011 Act 28, a Class B license is no longer required of people under the age of 16 for activities such as training dogs to track or trail bears but a license is still required for people under the age of 16 who are hunting bear under the authority of nuisance permits. This rule proposal would update rules for consistency with Act 28. Plain Language Rule Analysis: These rule changes are proposed to update administrative code language to correct inconsistencies, update outdated language, and provide clarification when appropriate. This rule package will amend regulations for hunting, deer carcass transportation, and captive wildlife found in Ch. NR 10, 11, 12, and 16.
Section 1 increases the legal width and height of colony traps by one-half inch so that trappers and trap manufacturers can utilize readily accessible dimensional hardware cloth to construct these types of traps.
Section 2 exempts private sector waste haulers from the requirement to obtain the department’s permission to move the waste to a landfill outside of the CWD management zone. Hauling may still only be to landfills which are licensed by the department.
Section 3 simplifies the application process for special gun deer hunts for hunters with disabilities.
Section 4 implements a language correction recommended by the Legislative Reference Bureau and removes a trademarked brand name from the same provision.
Sections 5 and 6 exempt wolf-dog hybrids from the perimeter fence requirement that applies to some harmful wild animals and makes the pen standard for wolf-dog hybrids consistent with true wolves, a species for which there is no perimeter fence requirement. These sections also repeal a “sunrise” provision which is no longer needed.
Section 7 establishes new fence standards for captive wolves, wolf-dog hybrids, and coyotes which would be the same as current rules for captive bear. The fences would need to be 8 feet tall with an additional 3 feet at the top slanted inward at a 30-45° angle. Canines are unlikely to climb fences, so this rule seeks to reduce fence standards for captive canines to reflect their likely behavior. This section also repeals a “sunrise” provision which is no longer needed.
Federal Regulatory Analysis: Federal regulations allow states to manage the wildlife resources located within their boundaries provided they do not conflict with regulations established in the Federal Register. None of these rule changes violate or conflict with the provisions established in the Federal Code of Regulations.
Comparison with rules in Adjacent States: These rule change proposals do not represent significant policy changes and do not differ significantly from surrounding states. All surrounding states have regulations and rules in place for the management and recreational use of wild game and furbearer species that are established based on needs that are unique to that state’s resources and public desires.
Summary of Factual Data and Analytical Methodologies: All of the policies in this rule are generally consistent with past board policies of regulating fish and game harvest for conservation purposes.
Colony Traps are a legal trap type for muskrat. The legal width and height of colony traps would be increased by one-half inch so that trappers and trap manufacturers can utilize readily accessible dimensional hardware cloth to construct these types of traps.
Under current rules, deer waste from the CWD management zone may only be disposed at a landfill within the CWD management zone unless permission to move the waste to a landfill outside of the CWD management zone is granted by the department. This change would allow private sector waste haulers to negotiate disposal contracts with landfills outside of the CWD management zone, which could allow private sector business more cost effective methods for disposing of deer waste.
The current application process for sponsoring a Gun Deer Hunt for People with Disabilities on private land is cumbersome. Simplifying the process will help to reduce costs associated with the application procedure for private sponsors as well as reduce the department’s costs of administering the hunt.
The holder of the Conibear® trademark contacted the WI Department of Justice requesting that the DNR remove the term ‘Conibear’ from administrative code, and replace it with a more generic term, such as ‘body-gripping trap’, to protect their trademark name.
Fence standards for captive wolf, wolf-dog hybrids, and coyote are currently the same as for cougar, bobcat, and lynx (i.e., 10 feet tall with an additional 4 feet at the top slanted in at a 30-45° angle). Canines are unlikely to climb fences, so this rule seeks to reduce fence standards for captive canines to reflect their likely behavior. The new fence standards that would be in place under this rule would be the same as current rules for captive bear (i.e., 8 feet tall with an additional 3 feet at the top slanted inward at a 30-45° angle). These rules also exempt wolf-dog hybrids from the perimeter fence requirement that applies to some harmful wild animals and makes the pen standard for wolf-dog hybrids consistent with true wolves, a species for which there is no perimeter fence requirement.
Anticipated Private Sector Costs and Economic Impact of Implementing the Rule: These rules, and the legislation which grants the department rule making authority, do not have a significant fiscal effect on the private sector or small businesses. These rules are applicable to individual sportspersons and impose no compliance or reporting requirements for small business, nor are any design or operational standards contained in the rule.
The proposed rule changes are not expected to significantly influence the spending activities or hunting and trapping activity of hunters, trappers, dog trainers, or other outdoor enthusiasts. Correspondingly, no related economic impacts are anticipated.