Give Us Your Opinion about a New Hunter Access Program
Access to hunt deer is key to successful deer management. Because 95% of Ohio’s land base is held in private ownership, access to private property is vital to the success of Ohio’s deer management program. Access to private property is a privilege that cannot be legislated. For that reason it is essential that hunters and landowners work cooperatively to develop positive relationships that facilitate the harvest of deer, specifically does, from private property. To that end, the Ohio Division of Wildlife (DOW) has teamed up with the Ohio Farm Bureau (OFB) to explore the possibility of developing a web-based deer hunter access program. When using this program, landowners and farmers looking for hunters to help control local deer herds would select hunters from a searchable database based on a set of criteria. For instance, the landowner may be looking for someone with 10+ years of bowhunting experience who is willing to bow hunt only, harvest a doe before a buck, and limit their hunting to weekends only. This search may yield contact information for 25 hunters. The landowner would select hunters from this list and contact the hunters directly. Hunters who participate would have to agree to a set of rules and regulations governing the use of the land. Hunters unwilling or unable to abide by these established guidelines would be removed from the database.
It is clear that the level of control sought by landowners and farmers in this program is a long way from the “good old days” where a handshake a head-nod were all that were needed. Unfortunately, a few bad experiences are all that it takes to lose this privilege. Hunters and landowners alike still stand to reap all of the same benefits of the past. The only difference is that hunters must be willing to build a “profile” of themselves in addition to the handshake. When using this program, interested hunters must we willing to “apply” for a place to hunt on participating properties. There would be no cost to apply or to hunt.
The purpose of this short survey is to assess the willingness of hunters to participate in this program. If you feel this is something you are willing to do, please click on the survey link below to give us your opinions (you will not be signing up by taking the survey). Please note that you can only submit the survey one time - be sure you are ready to submit before clicking on the submit button.