Hunters get their first shot at the winged, web-footed fliers today with the opening of duck season. Iowa Department of Natural Resources assistant wildlife chief Terry Little says it’s the first of two seasons. The season opens today for three days in southern Iowa, five days in northern Iowa to take advantage of early season migration. The second season begins in October. Little says the ducks should be plentiful, but dry weather may leave the birds with fewer places to land.He says west of Des Moines most areas are pretty dry and that improves to the east and southeast. Little says hunters need to take some precautions against the West Nile virus. He says mosquitoes may be in the wet areas along with the ducks and those mosquitoes might be carrying the West Nile Virus. Little says hunters should wear repellent to protect against getting bitten. He advises other protection after the hunt. He says hunters should wear rubber gloves when cleaning the birds to prevent being stuck by a broken bone, and possibly infected with the West Nile Virus. Little says this first season is a good one for first-time duck hunters, and those who don’t want to put a lot of money into it. He says anyone with a pair of tennis shoes, a shotgun and steel shot can go out and hunt the early ducks. He says the later season involves hunting on deeper bodies of water and requires more expensive equipment. Little says around 35-thousand hunters take part in Iowa’s duck seasons each year.
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