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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • MDC wants Missourians' opinions on protecting deer

  • The Missouri Conservation Commission recently approved proposed regulation changes to the Missouri Wildlife Code regarding the operations of hunting preserves and wildlife breeding facilities that hold white-tailed deer, mule deer and their hybrids.
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  • The Missouri Conservation Commission recently approved proposed regulation changes to the Missouri Wildlife Code regarding the operations of hunting preserves and wildlife breeding facilities that hold white-tailed deer, mule deer and their hybrids.
    The proposed regulation changes will be published in the Missouri Register through the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office at sos.mo.gov/adrules/moreg/moreg.asp for a 30-day public comment period beginning today.
    Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Director Robert Ziehmer stressed that success in keeping Missouri deer healthy and abundant depends on an informed and involved public.
    “Public input is an important part of how the conservation department makes decisions involving regulations,” Ziehmer said. “We will consider all public comments before deciding whether the regulations will be adopted, amended or withdrawn.”
    He encouraged all Missourians to share their comments on these regulations. “Get a comment card at MDC offices, nature centers and numerous locations where hunting and fishing permits are sold, or simply go online to mdc.mo.gov/DeerHealth,” he said.
    The regulations are part of MDC’s ongoing strategy to minimize the spread of fatal diseases in the state’s deer population, such as chronic wasting disease. This fatal disease affects members of the deer family, collectively called cervids.
    Chronic wasting disease is always fatal to infected animals and has no cure. The disease is spread among deer herds mainly through direct contact. The movement of captive cervids within states and across state lines spreads the disease to new areas.
    MDC’s statewide proposed regulations include:
    n Banning the importation of live white-tailed deer, mule deer and their hybrids from other states,
    n Improving fencing requirements for new and expanding captive-cervid facilities,
    n Requiring all deer six months or older that die in captive-cervid facilities to be tested for chronic wasting disease,
    n Establishing better recordkeeping requirements for captive-cervid operations, and
    n Prohibiting any new captive-cervid facilities within 25 miles of where chronic wasting disease has been confirmed.
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