JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Beginning July 1, deer hunters can apply online for a shot at nearly 5,700 openings for more than 100 Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) managed deer hunts taking place from mid-September through mid-January. Most hunters may apply for only one managed hunt per year. Wheelchair-confined hunters may apply for more than one managed hunt offered at select conservation areas.
The online application period ends July 31. The deadline in previous years was mid-August, but has been shortened to allow hunters more time to be notified of their selections for early-season managed hunts.
Managed-hunt dates, locations, and other details will be listed on the Department of Conservation website starting July 1 at mdc.mo.gov/node/11252. MDC will post drawing results at the same website address from Sept. 2 through Jan 15. Successful applicants will receive area maps and other information regarding their hunts by mail.
Details about managed hunts are also available in the “2014 Fall Deer & Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information” booklet available by July 1 at MDC offices and nature centers, from permit vendors around the state, and currently online at http://mdc.mo.gov/sites/default/files/resources/2010/03/ftd2014.pdf.
The Conservation Department holds the annual electronic drawing to determine who gets to participate in managed deer hunts at conservation areas, state parks, national wildlife refuges, urban parks, and other public areas. The hunts are open to Missouri residents and nonresidents, and help achieve MDC’s deer-management goals for the state while also providing additional hunting opportunities. Types of hunts include archery, crossbow, muzzleloader, historic methods, and modern firearms, plus youth hunts and hunts for people with disabilities.
MDC uses a weighted-preference-point system to give unsuccessful applicants an advantage in future drawings. Hunters who apply for the first time or who were drawn for hunts the previous year are statistically less likely to be drawn than those who entered but were not drawn in previous years.
Hunters may apply individually or as groups of up to six, except for youth hunts. Youths 11 years of age or older by the date of the desired hunt who are hunter-education certified may apply individually or with one other youth for youth hunts and must be accompanied on the hunt by a qualified adult mentor.
All applicants will need their nine-digit Conservation ID number to complete the application process. Conservation ID numbers are listed on hunting and fishing permits, and on Missouri Conservation Heritage Cards.
For more information on MDC managed deer hunts, visit http://mdc.mo.gov/node/3867.
Resident or nonresident managed deer hunting permits are required to participate in managed hunts. These permits will be available to successful applicants beginning Sept. 2 from any permit vendor statewide, or online through MDC’s e-Permits at http://mdc.mo.gov/node/10901.
Hunters born on or after Jan. 1, 1967, and who are 16 or older, must successfully complete an approved hunter education course to qualify to buy firearms hunting permits and participate in managed hunts. Youth 11 through 15 may hunt without hunter education certification when accompanied by a qualified adult mentor during managed hunts open to all. Mentors also are required to be hunter-education certified, unless exempt by age. Hunter education classes fill up quickly as hunting seasons approach. For more information on hunter education options and classes, visit http://mdc.mo.gov/node/3095.
Help Protect Missouri Deer!
Conservation makes Missouri a great place to hunt and watch deer. Infectious diseases such as Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) threaten Missouri deer, nearly 520,000 Missouri deer hunters, thousands of landowners, more than 2 million wildlife watchers, 12,000 Missouri jobs, and Missouri businesses and communities that depend on the $1 billion in economic activity related to deer hunting and watching.
The Missouri Department of Conservation is working with hunters, landowners, businesses, and partner organizations, along with captive deer breeders and big-game hunting operations, to identify and limit the spread of CWD in Missouri.
As part of these efforts, MDC is proposing common-sense regulation changes for deer breeding facilities and big-game hunting preserves to help limit the spread of CWD. Changes involve more effective fencing to separate captive and free-ranging deer, restricting the importation of live deer into Missouri, and mandatory disease testing. The Conservation Department encourages citizens to get involved by sharing their comments on these regulations at mdc.mo.gov/deerhealth.