Deer seasons in Missouri have come and gone; so should all deer hunting tree stands that have been placed on public lands managed by the US Forest Service. Portable deer hunting tree stands are permitted to be placed on National Forest lands in Missouri two weeks before deer season and must be removed no later than two weeks after the close of archery deer season, which ended on January 15 of this year.
Enforcement of this removal policy in southeastern Missouri was delayed because of the January 27 ice storm event.
The Forest Service is now enforcing this regulation, and any tree stands discovered by Forest Service personnel are subject to seizure and impoundment.
Be aware that permanent deer stands are prohibited on public lands. Permanent deer stands are any wooden or metal structure that has been attached or fixed on a tree and used for the purpose of hunting deer when in season.
Any permanent deer stands found on National Forest lands will be treated as unauthorized structures, prohibited under law and regulation, and are subject to removal.
In addition, use of screw-in steps, screws or nails, and any material that would damage trees is prohibited. Also, any deer stands placed on National Forest lands must be identified with the full name, address, and telephone number of the user. Stands not labeled with the above information are treated as unauthorized structures and van be impounded by agency law enforcement personnel.
For more information or questions concerning the deer stand policy on National Forest lands, please contact Bill Paxton, Environmental Coordinator, Poplar Bluff Ranger District, 1420 Maud Street, Poplar Bluff, MO, or by phone at 573-785-1475.