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Wild rice strategic analysis

Wild rice helps maintain water quality and provides food and habitat for waterfowl and other wildlife. Harvested by hand from canoes, wild rice is an important part of Wisconsin's cultural heritage, and is particularly important to Native American tribes. For more information on harvesting wild rice, see Wild Rice Harvesting.

The DNR is in the process of conducting a Strategic Analysis of Wild Rice Management in Wisconsin. The purpose of this analysis is to inform decision-makers and the public about current wild rice conditions in the state, information gaps, existing authorities and management practices and alternative approaches.

Public Notice

On April 14, 2021 the DNR released a Draft Strategic Analysis of Wild Rice Management for public comment. View the news release. The public is encouraged to review and submit written comments on the draft strategic analysis by June 7, 2021 to:

Department of Natural Resources
c/o Jon Simonsen, DNR Rhinelander Service Center
107 Sutliff Ave., Rhinelander, WI 54501
Email: Jonathan.Simonsen@Wisconsin.gov

Strategic Analysis Process

Protecting and encouraging the growth of wild rice in Wisconsin involves a wide range of environmental, cultural and socioeconomic considerations. In order to assess these using the best available information – with input from the public, tribal governments and other stakeholders – the DNR chose to utilize the strategic analysis process as outlined in section NR 150.10, Wis. Adm. Code.

A strategic analysis does not establish DNR policy or change existing rules. Rather, strategic analysis is intended to inform decision-makers and the public about a natural resource issue, including alternative courses of action and the anticipated effects of those alternatives. Once completed, the Strategic Analysis on Wild Rice Management in Wisconsin will help to inform the development of a comprehensive Statewide Wild Rice Management Plan.

Public and Tribal Input

The DNR conducted public scoping for the strategic analysis between June 14 and July 18, 2016. The DNR received 20 public scoping comments. Additionally, the DNR received the comments from the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and the Voigt Intertribal Task Force of the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission:

The DNR shared a preliminary draft of the strategic analysis with each of the tribal governments in Wisconsin, the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission and Voigt Task Force, the Wild Rice Advisory Committee and the State/Tribal Joint Wild Rice Committee. Reviewers provided numerous comments and suggestions, which the DNR used to update the draft strategic analysis in advance of its release for public review. 

Strategic Analysis Process Steps

The strategic analysis follows these general steps:

  1. Public Scoping – This step includes public input and consultation with Tribal authorities and other government agencies to define the topics and alternatives to be considered, and the analytical methods to be employed.
  2. Information Gathering and Analysis
  3. Preparation of the Draft Strategic Analysis
  4. Public Review – The public is given at least 45 days to review and provide comments on the draft strategic analysis.  < we are here
  5. Comment Summary – The DNR will consider all comments received and may revise the strategic analysis.
  6. Completion  The DNR will provide a summary and copy of the comments received and post the final version of the strategic analysis to this web page.