Avoid Ash Trees When Placing Deer Stands

Photo of hunter climbing into tree-mounted deer stand.

It is important to place and maintain tree stands carefully as you prepare for the upcoming deer hunting season. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR

By Bill McNee, Forest Health Specialist, Wisconsin DNR;; (920) 360-0942

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) cautions hunters to avoid placing deer stands in or near ash trees this deer hunting season.

Most ash trees in the southern half of Wisconsin, Door County and the Mississippi River counties are dead or dying from emerald ash borer infestation. Although emerald ash borer is not as widespread in other parts of the state, the invasive insect continues to be found at additional locations throughout the state and unreported infestations also are likely.

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Open Seasons And Open MFL Land

Map showing distribution of open tax law lands in Wisconsin

This Wisconsin overview map from Private Forest Lands Open For Public Recreation web map shows the distribution of open tax law lands (each point is a quarter-quarter section containing open land).

Fall has finally arrived in Wisconsin, although the temperatures to kick the season off certainly haven’t felt particularly autumnal. There are many blessings that fall brings, including Badger and Packer football, fall colors, apple and pumpkin pies, and of course fall hunting seasons. In the forest tax law program, we see a spike in interest for open MFL and FCL land this time of year, so it’s a timely opportunity to showcase open tax law lands.

By providing the public recreational access to their MFL or FCL lands, landowners support one of the primary purposes of Wisconsin’s Forest Tax Laws. Lands designated as open MFL provide public access for five recreational activities: hunting, fishing, hiking, sight-seeing and cross-county skiing. Lands designated as FCL allow for public hunting and fishing. Other recreational activities such as trapping and foraging are not permitted on these private open MFL and FCL lands without permission from the landowner.

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Don’t Spread Invasive Plants This Hunting Season

Erika Segerson-Mueller, DNR Invasive Plant Program Specialist, Oshkosh Service Center or 715-492-0391

Photo of a hunter walking through a field.

Whether you are headed out to a tree stand in your favorite local forest or a duck blind on the shore of your nearby pond, you can take a few easy precautions to help minimize the spread of invasive plants in your favorite hunting spots. / Photo Credit:

Heading out to your tree stand or hunting blind this fall? Avoid adding invasive species to your hunting party by taking a few simple steps to help protect your woods.

Non-native invasive plants often outcompete native plants in forest environments, degrading diversity and destroying wildlife habitat. Invasive plants can replace local forest species and may interfere with or decrease tree regeneration. They may take over woodlands, prairies and wetlands, and many provide ideal habitats for pests that harm wildlife and people alike.

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Aerial Spraying Set For Four State Sites

By Bill McNee, Forest Health Specialist, Oshkosh, or 920-360-0942

Spray aircraft used in spongy moth control

Spray aircraft used in spongy moth control. Photo: Bill McNee

At a suitable time between early May and early June, an airplane will spray parts of four DNR properties to reduce the population of spongy moth caterpillars (formerly known as gypsy moth). Treatment dates will depend on weather conditions and caterpillar development.

This year’s high populations threaten to strip trees of their leaves and possibly kill high-value trees at these properties.

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No vehicle access to Lake Superior landing

If you are planning to spend time during these last summer weekends on Wisconsin’s northern-most state forest, be aware that the boat landing at the mouth of the Brule River is closed. High water levels and wave action of Lake Superior have eroded the road leading to the boat landing. This popular take-out point is still open for carry-in landings, but vehicles are not allowed to drive to the landing. The distance to carry a watercraft is about 100 yards.

Canoeing on the Brule River State Forest.

Canoeing on the Brule River State Forest. (Rena Johnson photo / Courtesy National Association of State Foresters)


Paddling the Bois Brule River has long been a popular activity on the Brule Rule State Forest and is not impacted by this closure.

Find more information about recreational opportunities on this and other northern state forests here.