Missouri eases hunting rules to slow deer disease
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Missouri is easing deer hunting regulations this fall to slow the spread of chronic wasting disease among herds in central and northeastern sections of the state.
The Missouri Department of Conservation said Friday it's removing an antler-point restriction so hunters can kill more young bucks in 19 counties near or where the fatal disease has been found. Hunters will also be able to get two firearms permits for antlerless deer instead of one.
The department says the regulation changes are aimed at slowing the spread of chronic wasting disease, which affects the brains of deer and slowly leads to their death.
In 2014, there were 16 new cases of the disease in Missouri, bringing to 26 the number of cases since 2010 when the disease was first found in Missouri.