Banning Natural Lures for Deer Hunting

Deer LuresAROUND THE NEK - The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department is entering its first year of banning the possession and use of natural lures from deer urine or other fluids. The board passed this into effect to reduce the threat of chronic waste disease (CWD) entering the state.

According to Mark Scott, Director of Wildlife for the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department, there have been no confirmed cases in Vermont; but there have been two cases close by in New York. CWD is a contagious neurological disease found in the Cervidae family-- which include deer, elk, and moose. Scott said CWD is caused from prion, a protein, infecting the nervous system of the animal. It's a protein that is long lasting in the environment, making it important to be controlled.

"Chronic waste disease is contagious through deer to deer contact." Any deer that is sick acting or having abnormal behavior will undergo testing after it's deceased, according to Scott.

Before the ban was put into effect, the Fish and Wildlife board took at least one year to hold extensive public hearings to make sure this was the right choice to make.  

Jay Riley is the Operations Manager/Buyer at Village Sport Shop, and understands how natural lures could cause a problem with CWD. "A traditional doe urine, if you're using that, (it) can (the chronic waste disease will) stay present in the ground for decades. So it's dormant, like a virus."

According to Riley, there's almost no difference in price between natural and synthetic lures. "The idea of anything synthetic is not as good as natural, but at the end of the day it's going to protect the deer herd."

Even though this change has occurred, Riley said that their license sales for the beginning of rifle season this weekend are right around average.