St. Paul, MN (KROC AM News) - The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources set new goals and priorities with a new statewide deer plan that was released today. The Minnesota DNR is looking to increase formal opportunities for citizens to influence deer decisions and aims for a disease-free deer population.

The plan follows two years of planning and meetings and conversations with hundreds of citizens and stakeholders according to DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr.

“We’ve listened, and the plan reflects that,” Landwehr said. “The document is largely about sharing a vision, clarifying expectations and improving two-way communication among hunters and other stakeholders for the benefit of deer management.”

The 50-plus page plan is available on the DNR website.

DNR Wildlife Manager Leslie McInenly coordinated the plan and said the document will help forge stronger and deeper relationships with stakeholders in the years ahead.

“The vision communicates our commitment to long-term, sustainable deer management, hunting and recreational opportunities, and habitat conservation,” McInenly said. “We’ve placed a high priority on working with citizens to discuss how best to collectively work toward our shared goals.”

The plan has eight broad goals and covers topics raining from research to keeping Minnesota’s deer population healthy. It also touches on how the DNR and the public will work together on deer management. It also references chronic wasting disease will be a top priority for the agency.

“The long-term health of Minnesota’s wild deer and the need to work aggressively to eliminate the disease if possible was a key concern raised by the advisory committee and members of the public during plan review,” McInenly said.

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