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Environment & Climate Change

Whitmer vetoes bill that would have eased restrictions on feeding wildlife in areas where deer and elk roam

Female red-bellied woodpecker.
@maia bird
/
Cornell

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has vetoed a bill that would have eased restrictions on feeding birds and other wildlife in areas where deer and elk roam.

Whitmer says the bill clashes with state efforts to keep certain animals from congregating and spreading disease.

Feeding birds is not illegal. But it's illegal to put out food that can lure or attract deer in most parts of Michigan.

Representative Ken Borton's bill would have explicitly allowed people to place or spread feed within 300 feet from their house.

The Department of Natural Resources and the Michigan Farm Bureau opposed the bill. Years ago, Borton was accused of not doing enough to keep deer from his feeders in Otsego County.

He said the case was dismissed.