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story.lead_photo.caption Shown in this file photo are feral hogs that were captured in traps by Arkansas Game and Fish Commission personnel.

WMAs closed for hog eradication

Depending on weather, portions of Trusten Holder, Seven Devils, Cut-off Creek, Freddie Black Choctaw Island and St. Francis Sunken Lands Wildlife Management Areas might be closed to daytime public today through Saturday.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Wildlife Services, in cooperation with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, will conduct aerial operations to reduce feral hog populations on the WMAs.

Aerial operations are scheduled to begin today and continue through Saturday. To ensure safety for the public and to comply with USDA regulations, access will not be allowed during ongoing operations.

The operations will depend on weather and site specific conditions. The date range will allow some flexibility to cover large contiguous tracts of habitat. When access to the WMAs is restricted, AGFC and partnering agency staff will be on-site to maintain road and access closures.

For additional information, contact AGFC Statewide Feral Hog Program Coordinator J.P. Fairhead at (870) 253-3721 or the AGFC Wildlife Management Division at (501) 223-6359.

Congress floats CWD legislation

New bipartisan legislation in Congress would enable a national study of chronic wasting disease, a fatal neurologic illness that has been detected in deer, elk and moose in 26 states.

Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Doug Jones (D-Ala.) introduced the Senate bill (S. 382) on Thursday.

U.S. Reps. Ralph Abraham (R-La.) and Marc Veasey (D-Texas) introduced the companion bill in H.R. 837.

The bill will direct the U.S. Department of Agriculture to study how chronic wasting disease (CWD) is transmitted, how quickly it spreads among a population, and how easily it infects individual animals.

"Chronic wasting disease is one of the greatest threats facing deer and elk. It also jeopardizes the vital conservation funding that hunters generate through license sales and excise taxes on sporting equipment," said Mike Leahy, director for wildlife, hunting, and fishing policy for the National Wildlife Federation.

Sports on 02/10/2019

Print Headline: Outdoors Briefs

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