The Missouri Department of Conservation announced changes Friday to hunting and fishing permits and new regulations for handling deer carcasses. The changes will take effect in 2020 and will address a variety of issues for the department, including increasing costs of operation and the challenge of Chronic Wasting Disease among white-tailed deer.
Currently, landowners who are residents of Missouri can qualify for free turkey and deer hunting permits if they own at least five acres of land, according to a Department of Conservation news release. Starting Jan. 15, landowners must have at least 20 acres to qualify for these permits. Residents with five or more acres will still be able to hunt small game and to fish and trap without a permit, the document said.
Prices for some nonresident fishing and hunting permits will increase starting Feb. 29. This is the first increase in permit prices in over a decade, according to the news release. Permit prices account for 17% of the Missouri Department of Conservation’s revenue, and the increase in prices will help with increasing costs, the department said in the release.
Chronic Wasting Disease
New rules for the transportation of deer carcasses will also become effective Feb. 29, the release stated. The regulations will restrict the transportation of whole carcasses into the state, limit which parts of deer can be transported across county lines and require meat processors to properly dispose of and keep records of deer carcasses.
This is an attempt to curb the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease, a disease that causes the degeneration of the brain in deer and is always fatal. The disease has no cure.
Trout permits and tags
Annual trout permit prices will rise from $7 to $10 for adults and from $3.50 to $5 for anglers 15 or younger. Daily trout tags for three of Missouri’s four trout parks will also increase from $3 to $4 for adults and from $2 to $3 for those 15 or younger, according to a Department of Conservation news release.
The Missouri Department of Conservation is running a pilot program at Maramec Spring Park, where the daily trout limit will be raised from four to five trout. The cost of tags for adult fishers at Maramec will be $5, and the cost for anglers 15 or younger will be $3.
The fish gigging season will be extended 15 days, beginning this upcoming season. Gigging is a type of fishing in which people use a long, fork-like spear, or gig, to catch fish. The upcoming season will now run from Sept. 15 to Feb. 15.
Supervising editor is Hannah Hoffmeister.