The Missouri department of conservation is reporting a decrease for 2013 alternative method deer season harvest. According to scientist Emily Flinn of the Missouri department of conservation, the 20 percent decrease from the previous year was expected. Hunters checked nearly 12,000 deer during the December 21st through 31st alternative methods season. Flinn says the decrease in this year’s total harvest is primarily due to a reduction in deer numbers resulting from continued doe harvest, last year’s widespread hemorrhagic diseases, and record low acorn production. She says reduced deer numbers will be a factor considered by the department’s regulation committee when developing recommendations for the 2014 deer hunting regulations. The alternative methods portion replaced the muzzle loader portion of firearms deer season in back in 2012.