With Missouri’s deer archery season opening this week, the Department of Conservation is reminding landowners that bow hunters can help with deer problems.
The open season for taking deer by bow in Missouri occurs in two parts: from September 15 until November 13 (prior to when the firearm hunting season begins), and then again from November 25 until January 15. Turkeys can also be taken during bow season.
Homeowners who are experiencing problems with deer should consider engaging the services of bow hunters during this time.
It is permissible for bow hunters to take whitetail deer within the city limits of Springfield, as long as they follow the guidelines put in place in 2014. There is a two-acre minimum requirement for bowhunting take place, however, property owners can team up with neighbours to meet this requirement.
The Department provides some suggestions on how to approach bow hunters and what questions to ask to make sure that the partnership is fruitful and ethical.
Francis Skalicky, media specialist for the Department, said that questions should include: “How long have you been archery hunting for deer? When will you be hunting (ask for specific dates and time of day)? What kind of vehicle will you be driving? Will you bring anyone with you? Can you give me a courtesy call the day before?”
Skalicky adds that it is also appropriate for responsible bow hunters to ask landowners questions, in order to be clear on the expectations and scope of the partnership, such as: “Where are the property boundaries? Are there restrictions on when or where I can hunt? How do your neighbors feel about hunting? Can I use a tree stand, screw-in steps, etc.? Do you mind if I field dress the deer on your land? (If the answer is “yes,” ask where you can do this so the waste parts will be in an out-of-the-way area.)”
The Department provides a free booklet entitled “2015 Fall Deer and Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information,” which landowners and bow hunters should read before making hunting arrangements.