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E-M:/ deer license plates



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Enviro-Mich message from anne.woiwode@sfsierra.sierraclub.org
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Robert:

Thanks for raising the concerns -- several folks already raised the reality
that there are too many deer and management geared toward producing them is a
major problem contributing to the roadkill.  Also, more roads and more cars
and trucks on the road contribute - there have actually been analyses produced
about the trend toward more roadkill, which is a combination of these factors.
You are right that when there is roadkill it should be removed so that it
doesn't compound the problem by attracting eagles and other scavengers that
also get hit.

My reasons are many for wanting to highlight this proposed license plate as
simply the most ridiculous extreme in a trend we have increasingly seen here.
Although the state is evidently headed toward a record breaking surplus this
year in revenues, legitimate programs have to fight among themselves for
special new revenue sources, even when those funds amount to pennies.
Everytime an idea is introduced, everyone with any pet project fights over it
like gulls going after a chunk of bread.  The only reason the roadkill plate
is being discussed is that the DOT and county road commissions think they
shouldn't have to clean up dead animals, and the DNR doesn't think it should,
so the friends of roadkill are jumping on the nearest bandwagon whether it
fits the bill or not.

But I also  have to question whether there are more than a just a handful of
county road commissioners who would actually want to buy such a plate.
Can you imagine driving out of state, stopping at a gas station and having the
folks next to you ask what the plates pay for-- Michigan's image will be
permanently cemented to ROADKILL in these folks minds.  Surely the tourism
booster must wonder about this concept as well!

In any case, the ROADKILL LICENSE DESIGN contest is ON -- Please send us your
entries (again, nothing that smells!) by June 10 -- Sierra Club, 300 N.
Washington Square, Suite 411, Lansing, MI  48933.  

Anne Woiwode


As a biologist working in the U.P., I wanted to make sure Enviro-Mich folks
were aware that removing vehicle-killed deer from roadsides is more than
just a joking matter.  I am personally aware of at least 25 bald eagles that
have been hit and killed by vehicles while feeding on vehicle-killed deer
along just one small area of US-2 and US-45 in the Western U.P. within the
last 4 years alone. Many more eagles were injured by vehicles during this
same period.  My agency and others have worked for several years now to try
to come up with a solution to the problem, but the bottom line is that it
will take funds to pay for prompt removal of these carcasses.

I am not taking a position one way or the other on the deer license plate
issue, but I wanted to make sure folks knew that there is a need out there
to do this work, and it does affect other species, such as bald eagles.

Robert Evans 


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==============================================================
ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at
http://www.great-lakes.net/lists/enviro-mich/

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"
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