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    Whitmer vetoes bill to ease restrictions on feeding birds

    Gaylord – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed a bill that would have protected people from possible legal action if they fed birds in areas where deer and elk roam.

    Whitmer said the bill conflicted with state efforts to keep the animals from congregating and spreading disease.

    “Mary Poppins would be disappointed,” said the sponsor, Rep. Ken Borton, R-Gaylord, referring to the magical nanny in book and film who sings lovingly about feeding birds.

    Feeding birds is not illegal in Michigan. But it’s illegal to put out food that can lure or attract deer. The Department of Natural Resources recommends people in rural areas use tube feeders or suet cages at least six feet off the ground, perhaps surrounded by a wire fence.

    Borton’s bill would have explicitly allowed people to place or spread feed within 300 feet of their house. There would have been a cap on the amount of feed.

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