ST. LOUIS, Mo. — This weekend is the opening of the November firearms deer season. It is the biggest hunting season of the year.
This also the third year Missouri Department of Conservation is requiring all hunters who harvest deer during the first two days of the season (this Saturday and Sunday) to bring their deer in for mandatory testing for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).
This applies to deer taken within 31 select counties of the CWD Management Zone. These include Jefferson, St. Charles, Warren Franklin, Crawford and Washington Counties in our area.
CWD is spread from deer to deer through direct contact and through contact with soil, food, and water that have been contaminated through feces, urine, saliva, or carcasses of infected deer. Potential for transmission increases when deer gather in larger, concentrated numbers. Young bucks can also spread CWD to new areas as they search for territories and mates.
CWD remains relatively rare in the state at this time. Research from other states that have had CWD much longer than Missouri shows that the disease has been impossible to eliminate once it has become well established in an area.
The first cases in Missouri were found at private big-game breeding and hunting facilities in 2010 and 2011.
More information: Missouri Department of Conservation