Public comment period on new deer regulations begins
JEFFERSON CITY – A public comment period for new proposed regulations on deer breeding and facilities started Wednesday.
The proposed regulations would ban importation of white-tailed deer, mule deer and their hybrids coming from outside Missouri. It would require new deer breeding facilities to build their fences to new standards and also require all deer older than six months that die in captivity be tested for chronic wasting disease or CWD.
The specific regulations target deer breeding facilities.
"Our responsibility is to protect and manage Missouri's fish, forest, and wild resources, and white-tailed deer in Missouri is a very very important resource that many of Missouri's citizens enjoy hunting and fishing, and that's what we're trying to do with this common-sense regulations that we're proposing," said Mike Huffman, Missouri Department of Conservation division chief.
While the proposed regulations are particularly aimed at captive facilities and may cause some inconvenience to businesses, Huffman said the department is primarily interested in the welfare of the Missouri deer population.
Owners of those facilities say even though deer were found there with the disease, it could have been found in the wild just as easily and they're being unfairly targeted.
Robert Ziehmer, MDC director, said the department will consider everything the public has to say about the proposed regulations before making the final decision.
For more information about CWD from the Department of Conservation, click here.
Click here if you would like to comment on the proposed regulations.