The voice of Missouri deer hunters has been heard.
The Conservation Commission set the 2016-17 deer season at a meeting in August, and among the changes were a regular firearms season that was reduced from 11 to nine days.
But after analyzing public input gathered from a comment period in October, that decision was reversed at a December commission meeting. The season will run Nov. 12-22, 2016.
“Public input is a very important part in this process,” said Jason Sumners, the new wildlife chief for the Department of Conservation.
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“We have changed many parts of our original proposals after holding public meetings and gaining input.”
Other parts of the deer season regulations passed in August remain the same:
▪ The length of the firearms antlerless season will be reduced from 12 days to three. It will run Dec. 2-4.
▪ The limit of antlered deer has been reduced from three to two during the combined archery and firearms season, with only one allowed during the firearms season.
▪ The urban zones portion of the firearms season has been eliminated.
▪ Crossbows will now be allowed during the archery deer season.
▪ The late portion of the firearms youth season has been moved from January to three days beginning the first Friday after Thanksgiving. In 2016, it will run Nov. 25-27.
Other dates for deer hunters to circle on their new calendars will be Sept. 15-Nov. 11 and Nov. 23-January 15 for the archery season, Oct. 29-30 for the firearms early youth season and Dec. 24-Jan. 3 for the alternative-methods season.
Turkey season dates
Missouri turkey hunters also have some dates to circle on their 2016 calendars.
The spring youth season will be April 9-10, with the regular season set for April 18-May. 8.
The fall firearms season will run Oct. 1-31, as in the past.
Nature film fest set
Looking for something to do over the holidays? Try attending a free nature film festival Saturday at the Burr Oaks Woods Nature Center, 1401 NW Park Road, in Blue Springs.
Five films, including conservation, fishing, duck identification, birding for beginners, and exploring the Missouri outdoors, will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.