Licenses are available for a special antlerless deer hunt Friday through Sunday in 50 counties. State deer biologist, Tom Litchfield, says the special season was started in an attempt to control the deer populations in those counties. He says you can purchase as many antlerless licenses that you want and the numbers issued in each county are based on the antlerless quotas for each county.

The hunts are allowed only on private land. Litchfield says parts of central, southern and west central Iowa are the areas where the deer herd needs the most thinning. Litchfield says last year hunters took about three-thousand deer, which was down from previous years. But he says as the counties hit their quotas the need for the hunt drops and it will eventually no longer be needed.

Litchfield says the state isn’t far away from hitting its deer population goals. Litchfield says if the state maintains its current rate of harvest, then the state would hit is goal within two years. Litchfield says the plan is for more and more counties to hit their goals and then they drop out of the hunt. You can get an antlerless license at any outlet that sells regular hunting licenses. Litchfield says the state sold 10,000 licenses for the hunt last year.

The antlerless season is open in the following counties: Woodbury, Monona, Harrison, Pottawattamie, Mills, Fremont, Page, Montgomery, Cass, Adams, Taylor, Ringgold, Union, Adair, Guthrie, Dallas, Madison, Clarke, Decatur, Wayne, Lucas, Warren, Polk, Jasper, Marion, Monroe, Appanoose, Davis, Wapello, Mahaska, Keokuk, Jefferson, Van Buren, Lee, Henry, Des Moines, Louisa, Washington, Winneshiek, Fayette, Allamakee, and Clayton.