Fish hurt more by drought than most wildlife, MDC says

By Mark Johnson/Richmond News

As the hunting season approaches, the impact of the 2012 drought could be felt by some species more than others.

Among the species expected to have weathered the record-setting conditions this summer relatively well are deer, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation (see related story, page 11).

“Deer are resilient animals and have dealt with extreme conditions for millions of years,” MDC Resource Scientist Emily Flinn said in a prepared news release. “Although fawn survival can be affected by drought, the mild winter and early spring green-up allowed the deer population to enter the summer in excellent body condition.”

She has, though, received a larger-than-normal number of complaints about deer damaging crops, which she attributes to less availability of other natural foods, according to the news release.

MDC Resource Scientist Beth Emmerich said the warm, dry weather early in the nesting season gave wild turkeys, quail, pheasant and other upland birds a break from the wet, cold weather that they’ve had to deal with in recent years.


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