PIERRE, S.D. -The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) has completed a draft of the South Dakota White-Tailed Deer and Mule Deer Management Plan for 2017-2023 and is currently seeking review and comment from the public from now until April 16, 2017.

This draft management plan provides a background on deer ecology, past management and research, challenges for balancing population levels between hunter and landowner desires, and objectives and strategies to guide deer management over the next several years.

“With approximately 78,000 unique deer license applicants, there’s an obvious interest and demand for deer hunting opportunities,” stated Chad Switzer, wildlife program administrator. “South Dakota’s diverse landscape provides habitat for both white-tailed and mule deer. Recent public opinion surveys and a diverse stakeholder group provided useful information in the development of this comprehensive plan and we are now seeking feedback from the public.”

The draft management plan and information from the stakeholder group meetings can be found online at: http://gfp.sd.gov/hunting/big-game/deer/deer-management-plan.aspx. Written comments on the draft plan can be sent to 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, S.D. 57501, or emailed to DeerPlan@state.sd.us. Comments must be received by April 16, 2017, and include your full name and city of residence.

GFP Mission: The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks provides sustainable outdoor recreational opportunities through responsible management of our state’s parks, fisheries and wildlife by fostering partnerships, cultivating stewardship and safely connecting people with the outdoors.