Rural Iowans may hear the distant pop of shotgun blasts from the forests and fields this morning as the state’s shotgun deer hunting season opens.
Iowa D.N.R. deer biologist Tom Litchfield says he’s expecting about 60,000 hunters for this first season.
Litchfield says the two shotgun seasons on deer are Iowa’s most popular hunting seasons, when the most hunters are hunting and when the majority of deer are harvested. Up to 60% of the state’s deer are harvested in the two seasons. The first season runs today through December 7th and again from December 10th through the 18th. Litchfield says there will be plenty of targets.
He says the deer population was around 450,000 pre-season while this spring, the numbers were around 290-thousand post-season. Litchfield says there will be no changes in hunting regulations for this deer season and he says the hunting will be good or more challenging, depending on where you go in the state.
He says hunters in northwest and north-central Iowa should see similar deer numbers compared to last year, though populations elsewhere may be down. Overall, Litchfield says the Iowa deer population has fallen about 12-percent compared to a year ago. Learn more at: www.iowadnr.gov.
By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City