Missouri Deer News

Conservation reduces antlerless deer permits April 18, 2014 Missouri, News-Press Now
... the first antlerless deer harvest in the state was implemented in 1951 to curb a rapidly growing population. In 2000, an increase of antlerless permits meant that more does than antlered bucks were being harvested ...  other factors have also contributed to the decrease in the deer population ... two years of severe drought in 2012 and 2013 caused the worst outbreak of Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHD) in the state’s history...

MDC to limit antlerless deer tags April 18, 2014 Missouri, WGEM
... The changes are in response to lower deer populations statewide. But it's a decision local business owners and deer hunters say will make a big impact... Before the changes, hunters could get as many antlerless permits as they wanted...

Deer Won’t Be Livestock April 18, 2014 Missouri, Ozarks First. 
... Senator Brad Lager of Savannah had hoped to pass a bill this year considering captive deer as livestock under control of the state Agriculture Department... [audio of the debate from MissouriNet]

Fewer antlerless deer permits to be available in fall April 17, 2014 Oregon, Springfield News-Leader
... Faced with reports of dwindling deer numbers in some parts of the state, the Missouri Conservation Commission voted today to reduce the availability of firearm antlerless deer hunting permits in the fall...

Springtime brings recreation/tourism to State April 10, 2014 Missouri, El Dorado Springs Sun
... Over 520,000 deer hunters spend more than $750 million each year directly related to deer hunting in Missouri, which generates more than $1 billion in overall business activity in Missouri annually and supports more than 11,000 jobs....

... We will meet at the CFM office between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. on April 16, and then walk down to the Capitol to meet with legislators until noon. From 12noon until 1 p.m. there will be lunch served at the CFM office.  CFM will provide packets of information pertaining to the dangers of CWD ...

Differing definitions for deer April 6, 2014 Missouri, News Tribune
... Legislation is currently working its way through the Missouri Senate (SB964) and House of Representatives (HB2031) to change the classification of captive cervids (deer) from “wildlife” to “livestock.”  The legislation aims to transfer control of captive cervids from the Department of Conservation to the Department of Agriculture....

... The city received a grant and selected Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, affiliated with the USDA, to cut down on the population... "We looked into allowing certain people, bow hunters, it all just seemed too unwieldy to manage,"..

Buck Fever: How fair is the chase? April 1, 2014 Missouri, Lancaster Eagle Gazette 
... He wanted a specific animal, one he had selected before the hunt from a collection of photographs at the Oak Creek Whitetail Ranch...  price: $12,900 ... Oak Creek in east-central Missouri is one of perhaps 2,000 fenced big-game hunting preserves that have sprung up in at least 36 states in recent decades ... community standards for what constitutes fair chase vary from state to state... 

Fear for the future, CWD March 30, 2014 Missouri, News Tribune
... Since CWD was first discovered in Missouri in 2010, the Missouri Department of Conservation has taken action to drastically reduce the number of deer on the landscape in the CWD Containment Zone ... Deer numbers in the area are now only a fraction of what they were a few years ago and that has many residents furious... 

Missouri Deer Population Status Report March, 2014

Click on link at bottom for full screen



Testing results show no new cases of chronic wasting disease March 21, 2014 Missouri, texasdeerassociation.com
... Following the testing of 3,666 free-ranging deer harvested during and after the 2013 deer-hunting season ... The total number of confirmed cases in Missouri free-ranging deer remains limited to 10 found in 2012 and early 2013....

Visitors to Missouri Deer Classic heed calls of the wild March 16, 2014  Columbia Daily Tribune
... The combination of severe drought, an outbreak of hemorrhagic disease in 2012, and a 20 percent increase in the number of deer hunters — from 400,000 in 2000 to 500,000 in 2012 — is changing the way the department manages the herd ... deer biologist Jason Sumners ...

Let's protect these things we hold dear, Chronic Wasting Disease March 16, 2014 Missouri, Columbia Daily Tribune
... The worlds of wildlife conservation and deer farming are on a collision course. There is powerful evidence from other states suggesting the movement of CWD within and between states has been expedited by the movement of captive deer between facilities. There is concern about how this disease can rapidly spread to other deer while in the unnatural conditions of confinement. ...

Testing of deer shows no new cases of chronic wasting disease March 12, 2014 Missouri, Southeast Missourian
...  testing of 3,666 deer ... The total number of confirmed cases in Missouri deer remains limited to 10 found in 2012 and early 2013. All were from a small area of northwest Macon County near the area the disease was confirmed in 10 captive deer in 2012 at a private hunting preserve...

Family, Neighbors Upset After Officials Kill Pet Deer March 10, 2014 Missouri, OzarksFirst.com
... A family and their close friends are upset after a deer they all cared for was put down by officials last week... The deer's care has been a group effort. It was found near his mother after she was hit by a car ... 

Many challenges for deer hunting March 8, 2014 TribLive
... The Quality Deer Management Association held the first National Whitetail Summit in Branson, Mo ... Land and habitat fragmentation. Too many deer in some places, too few in others. Deer in the suburbs and cities. Shrinking wildlife management agency budgets. Emerging deer diseases ...

Bill would lessen deer-baiting penalties March 8, 2014 Minnesota, Pioneer Press
...  there are a few deer baiters who lost their rifles when they were busted... So they called their lawmaker, state Rep. Carly Melin, DFL-Hibbing.Now there's a bill in the Legislature that would lessen penalties for deer baiting...

... With Missouri ranking No. 1 in whitetail deer in the nation, the state provides a premiere hunting opportunity for collectors and traditional hunting enthusiasts alike.  The southwest Missouri chapter of Whitetails Unlimited is hosting a banquet starting at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 15, at the St. Mary's Catholic Church activity center....

... The Missouri Department of Conservation, under a unique arrangement ingrained in the state constitution, decides how to manage the state’s fish, forests and wildlife... Aaron Jeffries, assistant director of the conservation department, said he was working with lawmakers to have the agency exempted from the bill...

Deer hunters found prey hard to find February 23, 2014 Missouri, Columbia Daily Tribune
...  during the summer of 2012 a widespread outbreak of hemorrhagic diseases killed off many deer in Missouri... gun hunters in 2012 killed the third-highest total ... Acorns were extremely scarce in 2012, so deer had to cover more ground and use open-field food sources more frequently. Hunters took advantage... the double-whammy of disease outbreaks and high hunter success in 2012, the number of deer roaming our state took a hit in 2013....

Tough Times for Missouri Deer Hunting February 18, 2014 Missouri,  wideopenspaces.com
... the 2013 season will go down in history as the lowest for firearms since 1993... One possible culprit is epizootic hemorrhagic disease, which Missouri deer herds saw a sizable outbreak of back in the summer of 2012...  while Missouri does are certainly not in danger of extinction or anything close to it, they are also not anywhere near as numerous as they once were...

City may turn to USDA to reduce airport deer herd February 18, 2014 Missouri, Hannibal Courier-Post 
... will be contacting the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which reportedly has a program designed to “resolve wildlife conflicts that threaten public safety.” ... There will not be a bickering contest over who gets to sit out there and eradicate the deer because that is what it was boiling down to. I was starting to be contacted by people wanting to do it... only USDA personnel would be involved in the airport hunt...

MDC proposes deer management plan February 15, 2014 Missouri, vnewspressnow.com 
... The four goals of the plan are to improve deer population monitoring and assessment evaluate hunting season regulations and structure, monitor deer disease threats and hold meetings across the state to gather public input... the department will start using a different computer-based model to more accurately determine populations in each county. That model is the Statistical Population Reconstruction (SPR), which was developed by the University of Missouri and University of Washington...

Southwest Missouri deer population growing, but trouble elsewhere February 13, 2014 Springfield News-Leader
... Deer numbers in west-central, northwest and north Missouri are significantly different than in the Ozarks. We are seeing long-term declines over the past 10 years in those areas. But in the Springfield area and west of there, we are seeing a slowly growing deer herd. Especially near the urban centers ...

Mo. deer harvest follows trend February 11, 2014 Missouri, Macon Chronicle-Herald 
... “Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, and Minnesota all reported decreases of 7 to 26 percent in their firearms deer harvests ... a perfect storm of conditions we had no way of anticipating.”  ...a severe drought that began in 2012 and carried over into 2013. It caused the worst outbreak of hemorrhagic diseases ... in recorded history... the drought caused the smallest acorn crop since the department started keeping records in 1960...

More than 227000 lbs of Venison Donated in 2013 February 5, 2014 Missouri, OzarksFirst.com
...  more than 4,400 deer hunters donated more than 227,000 pounds of venison during the 2013 hunting seasons through the state’s Share the Harvest Program...

Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Resource Science Deer Biologist Jason Sumners provides an update on the current status of Missouri's deer population, development of the white-tailed deer management plan and provides a summary of the future direction of the deer management program. - February 4, 2014



Tonka, Hunters take 36 deer at Ha Ha Tonka State Park February 3, 2014 Missouri, Jefferson City News Tribune Online 
...  the DNR has held special managed hunts to reduce or prevent deer overpopulations at various state parks since 1987 ...  there are 16 state parks in Missouri where hunts are being periodically held to reduce deer population ... Others held within the Lake’s municipalities were for archery held Sept. 15 through Jan. 15 and included the towns of Camdenton, Osage Beach and Lake Ozark. Lake Ozark ...

Feeding deer a growing tradition at Jefferson Barracks cemetery February 1, 204 Missouri, St. Louis Post-Dispatch 
... Most people love seeing the deer, said Jeff Barnes, cemetery director.  Feeding the deer is “such a tradition here,” he said. No rules forbid it and that’s not expected to change ... Scores of deer wander among rows of white gravestones ...

Deer harvest numbers down in state, county January 29, 2014 Missouri, The Daily Statesman 
... Missouri hunters harvested 252,574 deer throughout the various hunting seasons in 2013 and early 2014 -- down from the 10-year average of about 293,060 ... 

Declining deer, booming moose, contributing trees and more January 29, 2014 Missouri, Patriot-News Blogs
... Declining deer herds and other threats to North America's deer-hunting heritage will be the focus of the first North American Whitetail Summit being convened by the Quality Deer Management Association ...  "Whitetail numbers are down throughout much of their range due to many factors including EHD, predators and even over-harvest," ...

Deer harvest numbers down in Missouri January 27, 2014 Southeast Missourian 
...  "Over the course of about 15 years, we were able to apply the brakes to deer population growth," he said. "Then came a perfect storm of conditions we had no way of anticipating."   The conditions included a severe drought that began in 2012 and continued into 2013, which caused the worst outbreak of hemorrhagic diseases in recorded history ,,, 

Deer-breeding businesses are in it for the bucks January 26, 2014 Missouri, Southeast Missourian 
... A total of 47 big-game hunting operations exist in the state, along with 253 captive cervid, or deer, breeders who raise deer either to be purchased by hunting preserves or for their owner's personal enjoyment, according to Tom Draper, deputy director with the department... Some hunters, such as the Missouri Show-Me Big Bucks Club, are ethically opposed to hunting deer that are not free-ranging...

... The combined harvest of all six firearms seasons (urban, early youth, November season, antlerless, alternative methods, late youth) was 200,280 — a decrease of 20 percent from the previous year...   the severe breakout of hemorrhagic disease that occurred in 2012. A total of 10,177 deer were known to have died from this disease statewide — a disease which was aggravated by the drought conditions of that summer. Keep in mind, this number represents only the number of deer found ...

QDMA's Whitetail Summit  January 23, 2014 Missouri, Quality Deer Management Association
... the first-ever North American Whitetail Summit.  When: March 3-6, 2014  Where: Bass Pro Shops’ Big Cedar Lodge, Branson, Missouri  What is the Whitetail Summit?  
The Whitetail Summit is designed to bring together representatives from all sectors of the deer hunting community to address the current challenges and threats facing white-tailed deer...

Missouri deer harvest follows regional trend January 21, 2014 The Rolla Daily News 
... “Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, and Minnesota all reported decreases of 7 to 26 percent in their firearms deer harvests,” says Sumners... unanticipated conditions were driven by a severe drought that began in 2012 and carried over into 2013. It caused the worst outbreak of hemorrhagic diseases – blue tongue and epizootic hemorrhagic disease, collectively referred to as HD – in recorded history. Those losses were deepened when the drought caused the smallest acorn crop since the department started keeping records in 1960...

Low deer harvest disappoints hunters January 18, 2013 Missouri, Connect · ByMark Slavit 
... Missouri hunters shot only 157,272 deer in the 11-day statewide firearms season in November.  That’s about 50,000 less than the previous year...  The numbers are the lowest since 1993... Brandkamp said ... the state allows too many deer to be killed...

Deer harvest negatively impacts local businesses January 17, 2014 Missouri, News-Press Now 
... Wednesday brought a close to the Missouri deer hunting season with the lowest harvest number in 20 years due to a reduction in the whitetail population. Local outdoor businesses depending on hunters bagging deer already have felt the impact of the dwindling numbers.... The reduced deer numbers are primarily attributed to a severe outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EDH) ...

Management of deer population questionable January 15, 2014 Missouri, News-Press Now
... I am a deer hunter ...  For 50 years, I have pursued this passion in Northwest Missouri ...  For many years now, “antlerless” deer have been taken from our region in staggering numbers. The truth is that in the ’90s, there were too many deer. Not so anymore... 

Weak deer harvest season draws concerns from hunters January 12, 2014 Missouri, kmbc.com 
... A severe outbreak of hemorrhagic disease during the summer of 2012 hit hard - harder than even the Missouri Department of Conservation first thought. That, combined with the long-term effects of liberalized hunting regulations that allow hunters to take unlimited does in many counties, several years of drought and reduced habitat, has hunters worried...

Deer from Stark City, MO. - January 11, 2014



Missouri deer hunting reaches crossroads January 4, 2014 Kansas City Star 
... “I’ve hunted deer in Missouri since 1984, and this is by far the worst season I have seen,” said Joe Monteleone, an avid deer hunter from Liberty. “We’re seeing far less deer when we’re hunting. Our trail cameras tell the story: We just don’t have the deer out there that we once did.”  ...

Hunters check 11,967 deer in alternative-methods hunt January 4, 2014 Missouri, heartland connection.com 
... Hunters checked 11,967 deer during the alternative-methods portion of Missouri’s firearms deer season Dec. 21 through 31. That figure is 20 percent fewer than in 2012...

Disease threatening Missouri deer January 2, 2014 KCTV5 News 
... chronic wasting disease ... The state has just 20 confirmed cases since 2010 ...  The Department of Conservation is proposing double fencing around deer farms and hunting ranches ... 

Harvest, violation numbers on the decline in southern portion of state December 31, 2013 Missouri, Christian County Headliner News
... This year’s harvest during firearms deer season in the Missouri Ozarks decreased by 17 percent from last year ... Another number that was lower from last year was the amount of road hunting complaints ...

Goodbye and good riddance to 2013, Where did all the deer go? December 28, 2013 Missouri, Kansas City Star
... Heavy losses to hemorrhagic disease in 2012 played a major role in the dramatic reduction in deer numbers... Missouri hunters took only 157,224 deer in the 11-day firearms season in November, a whopping 47,444 fewer than were shot in 2012...  lowest November firearms total since 1993...

Hunters take more than 10,000 during 'antlerless' season December 28, 2013 Missouri, Daily Journal Online
...  Sumners says seven decades of increasing deer numbers masked the natural variability of deer populations. Years of food abundance and scarcity, disease outbreaks, and variations in deer harvest related to weather all result in population fluctuations over time... 

Sunset Hills, Stop Deer Hunt Now To Stop The Over-Kill December 26, 2013 Missouri, southcountytimes.com, Sandra Jo Ankney
... In 2012, a few vocal residents complained to the city, demanding it kill the deer wandering in their subdivisions and eating their plants.... because of extreme seasonal heat and drought, the deer had become seasonally "vulnerable," in "survival mode," ... On each of the two-night surveys, only 66 and 83 total deer were counted in four square miles. MDC then turned 66 and 83 into a "fantasy 288" total deer population supposedly "hiding" in the four square miles...

...  fatal illness afflicting deer and elk called chronic wasting disease ... The first case was on a private hunting ranch in Linn County. The next 10 were confirmed on an affiliated hunting ranch in adjoining Macon County. The remainder were wild deer taken by hunters within a few miles of the Macon ranch.  The proximity of the cases has sharpened the disagreement between conservationists and owners of fenced hunting ranches ...

Urban-dwelling deer December 19, 2013 Missouri, Rapid City Journal 
... This season, just 600 deer were killed state-wide in Missouri's urban areas, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation.  The department reported that about 187,000 deer overall have been harvested so far in the season. Point being, the urban hunt plays a relatively small part in Missouri's deer season...

... This year’s harvest during firearms deer season in the Missouri Ozarks decreased by 17% from last year ... “The season began with unseasonable warm and windy conditions which affected deer movement and made hunting difficult,”  ... Another number that was lower from last year was the amount of road hunting complaints received ...

Mo. fenced deer farms under fire because of possibility of disease December 16, 2013 Missouri, Southeast Missourian
... The Westfalls' fenced operation isn't for hunting. The deer are there for their enjoyment... Ever since the agency discovered Chronic Wasting Disease, or CWD, in 11 deer in captive operations in northeast Missouri in 2010 and 2011 and 10 deer in the nearby free-ranging herd, deer farms have been under fire...

Archery deer numbers continue to experience uptick December 13, 2013 Missouri, newspressnow.com 
... With a month left in the season, 190,660 total archery permits have been issued this year. Last year, the total number of archery deer permits sold was 196,474 which is an 8 percent increase from 2011. Also in 2012, the sale of youth archery permits increased by 10 percent to 7,057 and youth archery antlerless permits increased by 21 percent to 2,191 purchased...

Tonka State park to close for rare managed deer hunt December 13, 2013 Missouri, Lakenewsonline.com
... six Missouri State Parks were randomly chosen to be the locations for the hunts.
Allowing residents to hunt in state parks is very rare. Missouri State Parks are wildlife refuges and hunting is not allowed ...

Hunters check 10,000-plus deer during antlerless season December 12, 2013  Missouri, Missouri Department of Convservation
     Hunters shot 10,581 deer during the antlerless portion of Missouri’s firearms deer season... The total firearms deer harvest so far this year is 187,130... “There is no question that last year’s outbreak of hemorrhagic diseases is being felt this year,” says Sumners. “We knew the 2012 outbreak, coupled with declines in the deer populations in parts of northern and central Missouri, would create areas of greatly reduced deer numbers. The 2013 harvest numbers are now creating a clearer picture of which areas were most heavily impacted.”  Sumners says Missouri has entered a new era of deer management, where deer numbers will rise and fall in response to natural and human influences.  “For the first 70 years or so, deer management was about growing deer numbers,” 
    In this new era of deer management, Sumners says deer hunters will play a more active role, not only as harvesters of deer, but also as decision makers about how many bucks and does should be harvested in their area. 

Town & Country Renews Contract to Lower Deer Count December 10, 2013 Missouri, Cbslocal.com
... The City of Town & Country has voted to continue its contract with White Buffalo Inc. to kill up to 100 deer in 2014... last year the city approved $58,000 for the company to kill 125 deer but will be spending less this year, $40,000 ... 

... The Westfalls’ fenced operation isn’t for hunting. The deer are there for their enjoyment... Ever since the agency discovered Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in 11 deer in captive operations in northeast Missouri in 2010 and 2011 and 10 deer in the nearby free-ranging herd, deer farms have been under fire...

... Dent County hunters took a total of 2,285 deer during the November Portion of the Firearms Deer Season Nov. 16-26, down by 389 from last year...  windy conditions during the opening weekend may have also contributed to lower harvest numbers ...

Town & Country again plans to contract for sharpshooting of deer December 3, 2013 Missouri, Newsmagazinenetwork
... Former Alderman Al Gerber questioned the success of the culling effort... “We’re seeing the deer population go down, but the number of crashes has remained about constant,” ... “In 2010, we said we’d use deer-vehicle crashes as a barometer of the success of the deer management program,”  ...
 ... 
Elk on way to thriving again in Missouri November 29, 2013 Missouri, WRAL.com
... The last wild elk was shot in Missouri's Bootheel region in the late 1890s, extinguishing a species that had roamed the forests and glades of Missouri for thousands of years. But in May 2011, Missouri conservation officials brought a herd of 35 wild elk from Kentucky ... "We've got 107 elk on the property right now, and that first year's group produced six or seven calves," Hasenbeck said. "We've now got Missouri-born elk on the ground." ...

Disease, weather blamed for lower deer harvest November 27, 2013 Missouri, News-Press Now
... Epizootic hemorraghic disease has struck hard at the health of deer herds and harvest numbers by hunters, said Roger Wolken, northwest protection regional supervisor ... A total of 157,272 deer were harvested statewide, the conservation department reported. That compares with 204,654 deer taken last year....

Diverse Factors Reduce November Deer Harvest November 27, 2013 Missouri, Wayne County Journal Banner
... Hunters shot 157,273 deer during the November Portion of Missouri’s Firearms Deer Season...  23 percent fewer than in 2012 ... Deer numbers are down throughout Missouri because of last year’s unusually severe outbreak of hemorrhagic diseases... a decade-long downward trend in deer numbers continues in northwestern and north-central Missouri. It began with increased availability of antlerless deer permits ...

Mo. opening weekend deer harvest down November 26, 2013 Missouri, farmtalknewspaper.com 
... Hunters checked 61,446 deer during the opening weekend of Missouri’s November portion of firearms deer season ... down 12 percent compared to 2012 ... Last year’s opening-weekend harvest of 69,614 was the smallest opening-weekend harvest in more than 20 years ...

Deer harvest down 42 percent in Dent County so far November 26, 2013 Missouri, thesalemnewsonline.com
... A total of 1,555 deer were checked from Nov. 16-21 ... Statewide, hunters checked 61,446 deer during the opening weekend of the firearms deer season, in spite of poor weather conditions.  Conservation Department biologists predicted that this year’s deer harvest would be smaller than last year’s due to a smaller statewide deer population and acorn abundance... 

Pale deer spotted in Cape are true albinos November 26, 2013 Missouri, Southeast Missourian · 6
... Dr. William Eddleman, former professor of biology and current senior associate provost and dean of the graduate school at Southeast Missouri State University, said he believes the white deer seen around Cape Girardeau are true albino deer. Such deer are a rarity ... Some organizations claim anywhere from 1 in 10,000 or 1 in 100,000 deer are albino...

Business as usual on Mo. deer opener November 22, 2013 Missouri, Kansas City Star
... "What we're trying to get across is that CWD isn't the end of the world right now," said Jason Sumners, deer biologist for the Missouri Department of Conservation. "But it's something we're very concerned about over the long term."  CWD was first discovered in northeast Linn County near the Macon County line in 2010 in a captive-deer operation. ..

Exterminated in 1890s, elk on way to thriving again in Missouri November 21, 2013 Springfield News-Leader
... The last wild elk was shot in Missouri’s Bootheel region in the late 1890s, extinguishing a species that had roamed the forests and glades of Missouri for thousands of years. But in May 2011, Missouri conservation officials brought a herd of 35 wild elk from Kentucky ... “What we’re seeing is that the elk are adapting very well here,” Hasenbeck said. “About a third of what they’re eating is from the forest — acorns, leaves from small trees. The rest is native grass and grazing from the food plots...

...  Hunters checked 61,446 deer during the opening weekend of the November Portion of Firearms Deer Season ... The opening-weekend harvest was down 12 percent compared to 2012. Conservation Department biologists predicted that this year’s deer harvest would be smaller than last year’s, due to a smaller statewide deer population and acorn abundance...

... Residents just north of Willard Orchard Hills Elementary told police on Monday evening that someone in a white pickup shot a deer from the vehicle and drove away, leaving the wounded animal limping in a field... 

“Mast” survey provides insights for deer, turkey hunters November 19, 2013 Missouri, Lawrencecountyrecord
... The nutritious meat of acorns is the most abundant staple food for a wide array of animals ...  When they are scarce, wildlife suffers... The Missouri Department of Conservation works with the Missouri Forestkeepers Network each year to conduct a survey of acorn production... last year’s report showed the lowest production of both red and white oak acorns in the 53-year history of the survey...

... the opening harvest was smallest in over 20 years. In 2012, over 69,000 deer were taken in the opening weekend...

Deer totals increase in region November 19, 2013 Missouri, News-Press Now
... A total of 8,635 deer were officially taken for all of the agency's Northwest counties Saturday and Sunday. That represents an increase of 277 from last year...

Firearm deer season off to slow start November 16, 2013 Missouri, KRCG
... Carl Baclesse said hunters had brought in seven deer by Saturday afternoon ... hunters used to bring in as many as 50 deer on the first day of firearm season in the past...





Search for news and information by keyword above or find links to state news stories organized by topic.

Missouri data: Deer herd estimated at around 1.4 million in 2013 and 2012 before hunting. A severe outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease reduced the deer population in 2012. The poor acorn crop in 2012  had the deer moving around looking for food during the hunting season, so the deer harvest was high, but the combination of disease and hunting sigifnicantly reduced the population. Deer numbers had been stable in some of the state, but have decreased in  parts of northern, central and western Missouri. Factors include increased bag limits and regulation changes that encourage hunters to take more does, several years of drought and habitat loss. The 2013/2014 harvest was the lowest since 1993, down throughout the state.  The Missouri Conservation Commission had supported policies to reduce the deer population for 20 years until in 2013 the herd declined beyond population goals in some areas, resulting in a reduction in the number of antlerless deer permits.  Average density about 23 deer per square mile in 2013. 
    As a result of unregulated hunting, the deer population was reduced to about 400 in 1925 when the State Legislature closed the entire state for hunting and imported deer from Michigan to restock the population.  In 1951, the first anterless harvest was designed to slow the growth of the herd.  In 2000, the number of does taken exceeded the number of bucks, putting downward pressure on the population.

Report Poaching, Operation Game Thief:  1-800-392-1111

Other useful links

Tweets about Department of Conservation


Missouri Department of Conservation News



Tweet on this timeline using #Missouri #deer

Tweets about Missouri Deer



Deer Population and Number of Harvested Does
Deer Management Goals The white-tailed deer is one of Missouri's most valuable wildlife resources. Each year hunters spend around three million hunter-days in the field pursuing the whitetail, contributing millions of dollars to the economy in the process. Public viewing of deer attracts thousands of visitors to our state's public lands annually. A recent survey of urban and rural Missouri citizens revealed that of all animals outside a zoo, people most prefer to see the white-tailed deer. It also is a favorite with children. The whitetail was selected as our state mammal by vote of school-age children. The graphic below summarizing the population history of deer in Missouri is from the UM Extension series of publications on the Ecology and Management of White-tailed Deer in Missosuri


Missouri Deer Population - UM Extension

Potential Diseases and Parasites of White-tailed Deer in Missouri
extension.missouri.edu