2012-08-23 / Community

Illegal blinds get notice

GLADSTONE – The USDA Forest Service welcomes hunters to Hiawatha National Forest, which provides nearly a million acres of public land for the use and enjoyment of the American people. According to Forest Service personnel, most hunters are responsible and follow the rules, however there is growing concern about the incidence of illegal abandoned (or so-called ‘permanent’) blinds on National Forest lands. Illegal blinds pose several risks, including safety hazards, environmental damage and hunter conflicts.

Hiawatha National Forest Supervisor, Jo Reyer, offers several reminders to hunters who utilize hunting blinds and stands on National Forest lands.

State of Michigan hunting regulations require that:

• Hunting blinds and stands on public lands must be portable and temporary.

• Blinds and stands can be placed no earlier than September 30th, must be removed by the following January 1st

• The name, phone number and address of the owner must be posted on the blind/stand.

Failure to remove any type of blind, structure, equipment or trash can result in fines, costs, and removal, destruction, impoundment and/or seizure of those items.

Hunters utilizing blinds on National Forest lands should also be aware that there are some differences between hunting on state land versus National Forest land. For instance, hunters should remember that all wheeled motor vehicles, including offhighway vehicles are allowed only on National Forest roads and trails shown open on the Forest’s current year Motor Vehicle Use Map. For more information on how you can help, or to report illegal blinds or dumpsites, please contact your local National Forest office: Manistique – 341-5666 or Escanaba – (906) 786-4062.

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