The Department of Natural Resources is regaining the authority to regulate businesses that set-up areas where people pay to hunt deer. The Department of Agriculture has been regulating the industry for the past two years, but legislators decide to have the D-N-R’s wildlife experts step back in to police whitetail deer preserves. The D-N-R’s Dale Garner says the department’s interest is in getting deer on the farms tested to guage whether there’s Chronic Wasting Disease in the deer, and to make sure the whitetail deer preserves operate as a “legitimate business.” Just how many whitetail deer preserves are there in Iowa? Garner says the Department of Agriculture didn’t keep count, but they think there are up to 15 deer preserves giving hunters who pay a price the chance to shoot deer on their property. Garner says there are some individuals who don’t have the time to set up a deer stand in a tree or scout for deer on their own, so they get their checkbook out and pay a guide to take them out in the preserve and show them an animal to shoot. Today, the state Natural Resource Commission will review the rules Garner has drawn up for these hunting preserves. The rules stipulate that the businesses must maintain fences to ensure their deer aren’t getting out into the wild, and deer from outside aren’t straying into the line of fire of the people who’ve paid to hunt in the preserve. State conservation officers will have the authority to inspect the fences of these whitetail deer preserves, and they’ll also have the authority to inspect the books of the businesses if they need to track some customer down because of a hunting infraction. Those who pay to hunt in a wildlife preserve populated with whitetail deer must also buy a state hunting license, and only hunt during specified seasons.
You are here: / / DNR to take over regulation of deer hunting preserves