COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) invites the public to a deer management open-house in Columbia from 3 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, July 9, at Hilton Garden Inn Magnolia Room, 3300 Vandiver Drive. This meeting is one of numerous open houses being held by the department across the state to discuss deer management with citizens.
Attendees will be able to visit booths focusing on the history of deer management in Missouri; the state’s new deer management plan; possible regulation changes and disease management efforts related to Chronic Wasting Disease and other infectious diseases; hunter retention and recruitment, landowner and non-resident permit privileges, urban deer management, and other deer-related issues.
The open-house format lets attendees concentrate on their particular interests, asking questions and discussing their ideas one-on-one with biologists and other key staff. Conservation Department Deputy Director Tom Draper says the goal of the meetings is to provide information and get feedback.
“We need people to tell us what they want Missouri’s deer population to look like and what combination of hunting seasons, bag limits, and hunting methods they want the Conservation Department to use to achieve their goals,” says Draper.
Deer hunting is an important part of the state’s outdoors heritage. Generations of Missourians have enjoyed this activity and deer season is still an event hunters of many ages participate in annually. Missouri has nearly 520,000 deer hunters and almost two million wildlife watchers who enjoy deer. Activities related to deer hunting and watching annually generates $1 billion in economic activity for thousands of Missouri businesses and hundreds of communities around the state, and support more than 12,000 Missouri jobs. The appreciation people have for deer is further proof of what many state residents already know: Missourians care about conserving forests, fish and wildlife.
If people want more information about these open houses or are unable to attend but still want to review the information presented and provide comments, they can go online to mdc.mo.gov/about-us/public-notices/deer-management-open-houses.