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DNR approves emergency feeding of deer

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- Extreme cold and deep snow this winter has led Minnesota conservation officials to reverse course and approve deer feeding in northern Minnesota.

It will be the first time the Department of Natural Resources had fed deer since a harsh winter 17 years ago. The DNR has been opposed to feeding deer because it can cause the animals to congregate and possibly spread disease. It also increases the likelihood that deer will become prey to wolves.

The feeding was approved for a region from around Cloquet, west to Cass Lake, north to International Falls and south to Ely. The feeding program is expected to cost about $170,000 and comes from a 50-cent license surcharge that hunters have paid for about 15 years.