Mule Deer Foundation Applauds Passage of WAFWA’s Energy Guidelines for Mule Deer

Mule Deer Foundation Applauds Passage of WAFWA’s Energy Guidelines for Mule Deer

Mule Deer Foundation
Mule Deer Foundation

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah –-( Mule deer hunters from across the country should applaud the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ (WAFWA) approval of new guidelines for balancing mule deer management with energy development, the Mule Deer Foundation announced today.

Released at the WAFWA annual meeting, which took place last month in Big Sky, Mont., “Energy Development Guidelines for Mule Deer” was prepared by the Mule Deer Working Group (MDWG), composed of biologists from state, federal and provincial agencies and created by WAFWA in 1997 to develop consistent, science-based information for management and research on mule deer.

The MDWG developed the guidelines based on the best available science and real world experience relating to energy development and mule deer, which have faced declines in recent years due to habitat loss and degradation, and displacement in part to certain energy development practices.

Western Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies
Western Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies

The report was authored by state biologists and reviewed by the energy industry, federal agencies and several non-governmental organizations. The guidelines are intended to help resource managers conserve mule deer populations during energy development through activities such as pre-project risk assessments, appropriate project designs, effective mitigation and reclamation, and adequate monitoring. Adaptive management techniques are a common theme throughout the document.

“If followed, these new guidelines will play a key role in sustaining mule deer populations during energy development activities,” said Miles Moretti, President/CEO of the Mule Deer Foundation. “Bringing together all the stakeholders before an energy project is initiated will reduce conflicts later during the development phase. We thank the WAFWA states for their forward-looking leadership in developing this important management tool.”

Mule deer and black-tailed deer populations have experienced range-wide declines in recent years. Habitat loss and fragmentation, especially on deer winter ranges, is one of the major causes of declining populations.

“Energy Development Guidelines for Mule Deer” focuses not only on traditional oil and gas development but also on geothermal, wind and solar energy development. The publication will be available in published form in the near future.

For more information about mule deer, visit or

About MDF:
The Mule Deer Foundation is one of the key conservation groups in North America working to restore, improve and protect mule deer, black-tailed deer and their habitat. With a focus on science and program efficiency, MDF has raised millions of dollars and put countless man-hours on the ground for mission-critical projects. MDF acknowledges regulated hunting as a viable management component and is committed to recruitment and retention of youth into the shooting sports and conservation. Visit or call 1-888-375-DEER.

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