Rocker and avid hunter Ted Nugent spoke to the House Government Operations Committee inside the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing today about the ban regarding using bait for deer and elk hunting.
The state’s Natural Resources Commission issued a ban on baiting or feeding deer and elk in August 2018 amid concerns about the spread of chronic wasting disease.
“If they think they can stop deer from swapping spit, they’re idiots,” Nugent said during a House Government Operations Committee meeting.
There are questions being raised about the science used to enact the baiting ban and there are baiting advocates who are not convinced that a ban will prevent or reduce the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease within deer and elk populations.
“Deer are eating from the same trees and plants anyway and the current ban is hurting the hunting industry in Michigan,” said Nugent, a 71-year-old Detroit native. He has family in Michigan, hunts here and remains active in state politics.
During his Tuesday testimony, Nugent criticized past comments by Michigan Department of Natural Resources wildlife division chief Russ Mason.
“Russ Mason, chief of the DNR, admitted if you hunt deer over bait and feed you are not a conservationist,” Nugent said. “… Russ Mason just doesn’t like hunters who hunt over feed and bait.”
Nugent gave testimony to the House Government Operations Committee regarding House Bill 4687, a plan introduced by Rep. Michele Hoitenga to halt the overregulation of deer and elk hunting activity in Michigan.
Photo by Gage Skidmore