New deer licenses
To the Journal editor:
The new licenses now in effect in Michigan are simpler only when compared to the license structure that evolved over the last 25 years.
At one time, a simpler and more effective license structure existed, it was the one buck only license for firearms, an archery license, small game license, fishing license and trout stamp. One buck only could be harvested with 3-inch or larger antlers and archery was good for anterless deer. The buck harvest was limited and time in the field was maximized for gun and archery hunters.
Under the new license structure, the separate archery license has been eliminated and replaced by a single deer license or a combo license with antler restrictions that really are not effective as intended. The option of spending time hunting in both gun and bow season is only there if you are unsuccessful in one season or harvest only large bucks or does in archery season.
This new license structure handicaps youths, disabled, and all deer hunters by forcing them to choose to shoot a larger buck (combo license) or take a smaller buck and forfeit their archery season, resulting in less time in the field. The one gun and one archery was simpler and more effective for Q.D.M. and certainly could be again.
Trophy buck hunting could be designated as such in geographical units where only 8-point or large bucks could be harvested, rather than place antler restrictions on everyone.
Trophy hunters would now have a place to pursue a wall hanger.