Iowa hunters are preparing to head out as the first shotgun deer season opens in Iowa Saturday. DNR spokesman, Tyler Harms, says some 60,000 hunters are expected to try and bag a deer in the four-day season.
He says deer numbers should be good as the deer populations have remained stable for each year going back to 2013, so he expects the deer harvest numbers to be around what they were last year. Harms says the conditions out in the field can cause a swing in the number of deer taken.
“Weather plays a big role both in the number of hunters that we see out in the field and how deer behave as well,” according to Harms. “The weather forecast for this weekend looks to be very favorable for both of those factors.” Iowa’s deer harvest for all seasons last year was 101,397. Harms expects hunters to have at least that much success once all the seasons are done this year.
“I would expect about a hundred thousand — yeah, very similar to what we harvest last year. So I would expect not to be too far off from that mark this year,” Harms says. Hunters are allowed to hunt in groups and drive deer. Harms says it’s important for everyone to discuss what they are going to do to remain safe.
He says you need to remember to wear blaze orange clothing and follow all the safety recommendations when hunting. The DNR has tried to control the size of the deer herd, and Harms says that results in 27 north-central and northwest counties which will have no county antlerless tags during the first shotgun season.
The second shotgun season will run from December 9th through the 17th.