Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve is a University of Minnesota field station dedicated to scientific research on major ecological and environmental problems, and to training undergraduates, graduate students and post-doctoral researchers. To protect ongoing research and to maintain Cedar Creek in as natural a state as possible, most of Cedar Creek’s forests, savannahs and other ecosystems are closed to the public.
When the deer herd at Cedar Creek becomes excessively large, we have highly regulated hunts as a way to keep deer densities at ecologically appropriate levels. Because this is the sole purpose for deer hunts at Cedar Creek, only does can be hunted and taken, and only in specific hunts that are established and managed by Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve. Because no fire arms are allowed on any University of Minnesota site, all sanctioned deer hunts at Cedar Creek are bow and arrow hunts.
Each year, Cedar Creek staff spend time evaluating the size of the deer herd and results of previous year’s hunts. Based on such information, a decision is made about what hunts, if any, might occur that fall. Listed below are three types of hunts, all of the being archery hunts, that have occurred at some times in the recent past. All are subject to change, including the number of spaces available in any hunt that might occur. The actions of all participating hunters directly impact the success of this management strategy and therefore the potential for any future hunts held at the reserve. Although herd reduction is the desired outcome of these hunts, safety is of utmost importance.
Cedar Creek has recently offered three archery deer hunts:
- MN DNR Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) program: mentored fall deer hunt (archery only) for women participating in the DNR’s BOW program. No firearms of any type are allowed on-site. Contact Linda Bylander (firstname.lastname@example.org) at the MN DNR for more information.
- National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) program: mentored fall deer hunt for youth. No firearms of any type are allowed on-site. Contact Jim Krueger (email@example.com) for more information.
- Archery Special Hunt: application-based fall archery deer hunt. These hunts will be only held in those years when analyses show that the deer herd needs to be thinned. If a special hunt is to be held, it will be announced on or before August 1, at which time an application to hunt can be downloaded from this web site and submitted in accordance with the rule and regulations stated on the application. Please note that these are highly restricted archery hunts that must obey permitted location, timing, take and other requirements. Only does may be taken. Space is limited, with up to 30% of slots reserved for applicants who regularly volunteer in Cedar Creek’s other long-term land management programs. Remaining slots are assigned by the Associate Director based on information provided in the application materials. Safety is of greatest importance in hunter approval. Hunting effectiveness and fairness are of importance. A random drawing will be used to choose hunters from the approved pool, and hunting locations will also be assigned by a random draw.
If a hunt is to be held, Applications are due by August 15, and all applicants will be informed of their status (selected or not) by September 1st. A required non-refundable $10 application fee defrays administrative costs; an additional $50 hunting fee will be charged to hunters selected to participate.