The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says the numbers reported by hunters show just over 142,000 deer were taken in the 2008-2009 seasons. State deer biologist, Tom Litchfield, says that’s not as many as last year.
He says the harvest was down number wise as fewer bucks were taken, and the number of does taken was down slightly from the previous year. Litchfield says the overall harvest was just over 4,000 less than last year. Litchfield says 53% of the deer taken by hunters were does, which is important.
Litchfield says throughout most of the state, especially in the southern, southwestern and eastern part of the state, the doe harvest is the "crucial key" in reducing the deer population. He says the doe harvest was concentrated in those portions of the state. Litchfield says the number of deer taken could actually be higher as field sampling shows not all hunters reported their kills as required.
Litchfield says the percentage compliance in the mandatory reporting was only a few percentages different from last year with an estimated 86% compliance. He says they’d like to get those numbers up a little more as the reporting in important to the D.N.R. in setting the hunting limits.
Litchfield says if you factor in field sampling calculations, the estimated deer harvest would be 165,350. You can see the entire report on the deer harvest at the D.N.R.’s website under the deer information section.