The Missouri Department of Conservation has expanded restrictions on feeding deer and placing minerals for deer from 29 counties last year to 41 counties this year. The ban went into effect July 1.
The goal of the expanded feeding ban is to help limit the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease, or CWD. The 41 counties comprise MDC’s CWD Management Zone. MDC designates counties in and around where CWD has been found as part of its CWD Management Zone.
The 12 new counties are Barry, Benton, Cedar, Dade, Hickory, Ozark, Polk, St. Clair, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, Stone, and Taney. They were added in response to finding CWD in Jefferson and St Clair counties during MDC’s sampling efforts last season, and the finding of CWD last year in hundreds of deer in northwest Arkansas near the Missouri border.
According to the Wildlife Code of Missouri, the placement of grain, salt products, minerals, and other consumable natural and manufactured products used to attract deer is prohibited year-round within counties of the CWD Management Zone. Exceptions are feed placed within 100 feet of any residence or occupied building, feed placed in such a manner to reasonably exclude access by deer, and feed and minerals present solely as a result of normal agricultural or forest management, or crop and wildlife food production practices.
The 12 new counties join these 29 existing counties of the Department’s CWD Management Zone: Adair, Boone, Callaway, Carroll, Chariton, Cole, Cooper, Crawford, Franklin, Gasconade, Jefferson, Knox, Linn, Livingston, Macon, Miller, Moniteau, Morgan, Osage, Putnam, Randolph, Schuyler, Scotland, Shelby, St. Charles, St. Louis, Sullivan, Warren, and Washington.
“CWD is spread from deer to deer and the potential for transmission increases when deer gather in larger, concentrated numbers,” said MDC Wildlife Disease Coordinator Jasmine Batten. “Feeding deer or placing minerals for deer unnaturally concentrates the animals and can help spread the deadly disease.”
Additional information about CWD is available in MDC’s 2017 Fall Deer & Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information booklet and online at mdc.mo.gov.