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STATE OUTDOORS ROUND-UP: New crossbow hunting season signed into law

Crossbow hunting

MADISON - Wisconsin will have a new crossbow hunting season at the same time as the fall bow-and-arrow deer hunting.  Governor Scott Walker has signed a bill creating the new cross-bow opportunity.  

Until now, crossbow hunting was only allowed for seniors over 65 and those with disabilities.  Now, folks of all legal hunting ages and abilities can use cross-bows to hunt deer, rabbits, coyotes, and other smaller animals.  The season will run from about mid-September to around the first of December each year.

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Wisconsin's DNR headquarters are open again, after massive flooding shut down the building for a part of yesterday.  The Administration Department said the cleanup was almost finished this morning, and the DNR has returned to its normal operations.  Parts of seven floors, including the basement, were flooded yesterday.  The administration said it appeared to be caused by a system failure in which cold air was pulled in, causing pipes to freeze and burst.  Today, officials say the building is dry -- all pipes have water pressure -- work stations have been cleaned -- and the heat is on, a must considering that the wind-chill factor in Madison was still eight-below as of 10 this morning.  It might be a few weeks before we get a dollar-estimate of damage, but the Administration Department said computer equipment and work stations only had minor damage.

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Wisconsin is getting a visit from one of nature’s rare and majestic birds. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources says snowy owls are passing though the state, in what could be a historic movement the Great Lakes to the Atlantic coast. The department says there have been over 50 snowy owls spotted in the state, well above average for this time of the year. Experts say the migration could be linked to the population of lemmings, the snowy owl’s favorite prey.

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