A committee of Pennsylvania Game Commission staff has recommended a statewide ban on feeding white-tailed deer.
The agency biologists said that banning artificial feeding stations would help slow the spread of wildlife diseases. They're asking residents to voluntarily stop feeding deer.
The commission often addresses wildlife outbreaks of insect-borne infections, West Nile Virus, and other flare-ups, but its scientists are most concerned about chronic wasting disease in deer.
The neurological disorder is fatal, and exposure cannot be detected until shortly before the deer's death. The disease has spread to herds in 23 states, including Pennsylvania, where it continues to spread.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that municipalities that have proposed feeding bans in the past have faced opposition and eventually abandoned the idea after backlash from voters who enjoy the pastime.