State wildlife biologists with the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department are recommending changes to the boundaries of some of Vermontís 24 Wildlife Management Units (WMUs).
The Fish & Wildlife Board is holding two public hearings on the proposal beginning at 7:00 p.m. on July 23 at the Town Hall, 49 Mill Street, Island Pond, and on July 25 at Hartford High School, 37 Highland Avenue, White River Junction.
The biologists often recommend hunting regulations tailored to specific WMUs. The WMUs were created in in the 1970s based on their habitat conditions, climate, size, and species densities to help manage deer populations on a regional basis. In recent years, hunting regulations for wild turkey, moose, furbearers, and snowshoe hare also have been added that are specific to certain WMUs.
Biologists have noticed that some WMUs now have habitat conditions that are more similar to those in adjoining units. They also have found that the sample sizes of biological data from the smaller subunits have not been adequate. In addition, the implementation of the 9-1-1 program created changes in town highway names and numbers.
In response, the Fish & Wildlife Department recently presented a recommendation to the Fish & Wildlife Board to update some WMU boundaries as follows:
1) Combining K1 and K2 into a single WMU K,
2) Adjust the eastern boundary of WMU Q to avoid the Connecticut River Valley,
3) Combine M2 and O2 into a single WMU O that extends along the Connecticut River Valley to the Massachusetts border,
4) Combine M1 and O1 into a single WMU M,
5) Extend J2 north along the Connecticut River to include that valley habitat currently within H2 and E,
6) Combine H1 and the mountainous portion of H2 into a single WMU H,
7) Expand the western border of E to include similar habitat currently within WMU D2, and
8) Expand the northeastern boundary of D1 easterly to include farmland currently in WMU D2.
The departmentís recommendation is on its website (www.vtfishandwildlife.com). Under Law Enforcement, click on Rules and Proposed Rules.
Contacts: Scott Darling, 802-786-3862; Mark Scott, 802-241-3700