Colorado Parks and Wildlife and The Keystone Center are hosting a series of seven meetings across the state to receive public input about the development of a comprehensive mule deer strategy.
The strategy will guide agency efforts to work towards increasing mule deer populations, which have been declining throughout the western United States, according to a CPW news release. In recent years, mule deer populations in Colorado have decreased below the target objectives set by wildlife managers in concert with the public.
CPW and The Keystone Center launched the process to bring together sportsmen, landowners, outfitters, biologists, wildlife managers, other state agencies, federal agencies, local elected officials and any other interested members of the public to discuss the issues facing mule deer and discuss solutions. While many ideas exist, a focused effort by all groups can make a difference.
“The declining mule deer population is concerning to our agency and many stakeholders across the state,” said Chad Bishop, assistant director of Wildlife and Natural Resources for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, in the release. “Due to the variety of factors that influence deer populations, we are looking for public feedback on an approach that brings together everyone’s limited resources in an impactful way.”
Public meetings are an opportunity for people to meet with agency staff, learn more about the history of mule deer in Colorado and provide input to be considered in developing a mule deer strategy.
“We truly want to hear from sportsmen, landowners, industry, conservationists and other constituents about their current experiences with mule deer and their ideas moving forward to increase the population,” said CPW Northwest Region manager Ron Velarde in the release.
CPW and The Keystone Center have already hosted meetings in Loveland, Durango, Pueblo and Gunnison. The next meeting is scheduled to take place from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, May 6, at the Eagle County Fairgrounds, 426 Fairgrounds Road in Eagle.
The final two meetings take place from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, May 13, at Country Inns of America, 718 Horizon Drive in Grand Junction, and from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, May 20, at the Moffat County Fairgrounds Pavilion, 640 E. Victory Way in Craig.