Michigan DNR Offers Grants for Improving Deer Habitats in the Upper Peninsula

Feb 15, 2021

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The Michigan DNR is accepting applications for U.P. Deer Habitat Improvement Partnership grants.

These are grants between $2,000 and $15,000 for the purpose of directly improving deer habitats.

The DNR has a total of $100,000 to distribute.  

This money comes from a portion of the revenue collected from deer hunting licenses.

The program’s administrator, Bill Scullon, said $100,000 actually isn’t a lot.

“It may seem like a lot of money, but it’s not a ton of money,” he said. “So what we try to do is partner with conservation groups, NGOs and other entities to try to amplify the effects on the ground.”

Scullon said forming these partnerships is imperative to having a wide-reaching impact.

In the 13 years it has been around, the program has helped to fund more than 90 projects to improve thousands of acres of deer habitat.

Scullon said completed projects have been diverse because the area’s deer have separate summer and winter ranges.

As a result, different projects serve different purposes.

“Some of those winter range projects tend to be a lot more long-term in scope where they’re planting hemlock and cedar or other pine species to try to create shelter cover for deer in the wintertime,” Scullon said.

Summer projects, on the other hand, have involved things like planting shrubs, apple trees and grasses to create foraging spaces for deer.

If you’re interested in working on a project, Scullon encourages you to interact with DNR staff to build a strong proposal.

Partners must provide 25 percent of the project’s costs.

A link to application materials can be found through the Michigan DNR’s website.

The deadline to submit applications is March 12.