Citizens can weigh in Monday on outdoors issues

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Associated Press, staff | April 14, 2014

LA CROSSE — Residents in all 72 Wisconsin counties will get a chance to weigh in Monday on issues ranging from whether to allow the hunting of tundra swans to whether hunters should be allowed to venture onto private land to retrieve a hunting dog.

The annual meetings of the Wisconsin Conservation Congress, a group that advises the state Department of Natural Resources and the Natural Resources Board on policy changes, will be held Monday at 7 p.m. Locations are listed online.

In Walworth County, the meeting will be held at Delavan-Darien High School, LGR Room 124/125, 150 Cummings St., Delavan.

Attendees will be given a questionnaire seeking their opinions on a number of proposals and issues, and they will elect county delegates.

The proposal involving hunting tundra swans is shaping up to be one of the more controversial issues.

The Madison Audubon Society Board and other conservation groups worry that hunters will mistakenly shoot once-endangered trumpeter swans instead of tundra swans. They also say a hunt would disrupt the spring bird-watching season, The Capital Times reported.

Marc Schultz, the chairman of WCC La Crosse County, didn't offer an opinion except to say tundra swans might not be easy to hunt because they tend to congregate in areas closed to hunting.

"They're a very intelligent bird," Schultz told the La Crosse Tribune.

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