Outdoor News Bulletin

Outdoor News Bulletin

May 2020 Edition | Volume 74, Issue 5 | Published since 1946

COVID-19 – Lessons in CWD Management for Deer Hunters

What the current coronavirus disease (COVID-19) response around the world has taught us are the basic biological principles that influence the risk of disease transmission among individuals. The principles used in the COVID-19 response are useful to better understand how to manage a disease like Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in deer (including white-tailed deer, mule deer, and elk). While the two diseases and the infectious agents that cause them are totally different, they share a few similar characteristics of transmissibility that offer useful lessons on how to manage our way through them.

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Engaging Youth and Young Adults in Conservation

How does a state agency concerned about the future engage youth and young adults? If you’re the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) and the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW), you connect with MOJO Ad, a student-staffed advertising agency in the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri. MOJO Ad specializes in all things young. Last Fall, three teams of students with diverse backgrounds reviewed MDC and NDOW programs and conducted surveys of people’s attitudes, behaviors, and beliefs. Results of the survey revealed that youth and young adults (YAYAs) are significantly different from older Americans, including Millennials and Generation X. YAYA individuals have lower trust in the media to provide honest news and less faith in governments to address social and environmental issues. Nevertheless, YAYAs have deep, personal commitments to improving the future through collaborative action. Armed with this information, each of the three teams developed an outreach campaign designed to show YAYA individuals the importance of conservation and ways to connect with MDC and NDOW.

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Studying Introduced New England Cottontails Through Genetic Monitoring

As conservationists create hundreds of acres of young forest each year to provide food and cover for New England cottontails, it is becoming increasingly clear that humans will need to help these rabbits find and occupy new areas. One way to do that – and to boost numbers and health of small populations that already exist in the species’ six-state range – is to release captive-bred rabbits into habitat sites. With the Wildlife Management Institute helping to coordinate efforts, state and federal agencies are working to make habitat for and monitor population numbers of this beleaguered native species through a regional restoration effort that also includes a captive breeding element.

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Cooperative Research Unit Corner

Engaging Hunters in Selecting Duck Season Dates Using Decision Science

The USGS New York Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) have been working together on a decision making process for setting duck season dates in New York. Waterfowl season dates are set annually by a combined state and federal process, and individual states are responsible for annually selecting duck season dates within allowable timeframes set by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The partners are collaborating to determine an effective way to integrate waterfowl hunters’ interests into the season setting process.

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