Missouri proposes changes in hunting and crossbow regulations.
During a three-hour meeting earlier this week, hunters and lawmakers gathered to discuss Missouri hunting regulations. Amongst other topics that were discussed, some of the most controversial topics were allowing crossbows to archery deer and turkey season, eliminating urban deer hunting, and changing the youth hunter's season from January to the end of November.
Changes in Crossbow Categorization
Right now, crossbows are allowed to be used in firearm season. New regulations could allow for their use during archery season. Permitting crossbows to be used during archery season could encourage younger hunters to get started sooner or aging hunters to continue hunting longer. The opposition to these proposed changes claim the crossbow is too accurate in comparison to a traditional bow. They also say that the crossbow is more closely related to a firearm because of its scope and trigger.
If this proposed regulation passes, 25,000 of Missouri's 120,000 archer hunters could switch to using crossbows or a combination of the traditional bow and a crossbow.
Buck Limit Cut By Half
Another topic that was discussed was the potential to reduce the bag limit for bucks by half - from two to one buck during archery season. Many claim that there is no need for this change because it would not affect the deer populations.
This proposed change is in response to the threat of Chronic Wasting Disease in deer. The state is trying to figure out a way to raise deer population numbers so that the species can survive this horrible disease.
Changes to a Constitutional Amendment
Hunters are outraged at the thought that proposed changes in the state's taxes could reduce the conservation budget by $55 million each year. The amendment would change the tax revenue directed towards conservation from 1/8 of 1 cent to 1/16 of 1 cent. This change would be detrimental to the state's ability to conserve the state's wildlife.
There is one more meeting to discuss the Missouri hunting regulations this month and residents are encouraged to comment online about this issue.