LANSING, Mich. — A plan has been proposed to end the ban on baiting deer and elk in Michigan by House Committee Rep. Michelle Hoitenga, and it was approved by the House Government Operations Committee.
Hoitenga says the ban is hurting outdoor enthusiasts and local businesses.
"Baiting is a method that hunters have relied on for generations, and there's absolutely no evidence it contributes to the spread of disease," Hoitenga said. "It's silly for the NRC to ban hunters from scattering apples around their deer blinds when every day deer graze on apples that fall off trees in nature."
The ban was issued by the Michigan Natural Resources Commission in August 2018 amid concerns about the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD), according to the release.
"The ban is doing more harm than good by chasing hunting families away from the sport," Hoitenga said. "The revenue generated from hunting licenses helps support conservation efforts carried out by the DNR, and hunting enthusiasts play a crucial role in supporting our state's northern and rural economies."
The release stated that last year hunting and fishing license sales made up 20% of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources' entire annual budget, equal to $83.5 million.
Also, according to one recent study, 171,000 jobs are created and supported annually across Michigan by hunting and fishing activity.
And, hunting generates around $8.9 billion in economic impact, the study said.
The plan, House Bill 4687, which would allow people to bait deer and elk during open seasons in Michigan moves to the full House for consideration.
The Michigan DNR describes baiting as leaving a substance intended for consumption that is composed of grains, minerals (including salt and salt blocks), fruits, vegetables, hay or other food materials, which may lure, entice or attract deer or elk as an aid in hunting.
They say that baiting and feeding are banned in the lower peninsula and in the U.P. where there is a surveillance area for CWD.
For more information on baiting and feeding regulations, please click here.
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