First weekend firearm deer totals well behind 2012
November 27, 2013 at 04:42 PM
Prairie State Outdoors
Illinois deer hunters killed a preliminary total of 55,708 deer during the first segment of the Illinois firearm deer-hunting season Nov. 22-24.
The second half of the season will be held Dec. 5-8.
This year’s opening weekend compares with 72,111 deer taken during the first half of the 2012 firearm season.
Hunters killed a total of 99,546 deer during the full seven-day firearm season last year.
Paul Shelton, forest wildlife program manager for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, said cold and windy weather likely had an effect on hunter success.
“Weather conditions were difficult throughout most of the season, with some parts of the state seeing rain or snow, and virtually everywhere getting a taste of high winds and frigid temperatures,” Shelton wrote in a press release announcing the results.
The top counties for the first weekend were Pike (1,535), Jackson (1,526), Randolph (1,436), Fulton (1,409) and Adams (1,393).
In Sangamon County, hunters killed a preliminary total of 393 compared with 644 deer taken last year.
Totals for other central Illinois counties include: Brown (734), Christian (401), Clinton (420), Greene (763), Logan (251), Macon (318), McLean (427), Menard (211), Morgan (543), Scott (299) and Shelby (714).
Fifty-nine percent of deer taken were bucks.
DNR has issued more than 340,000 permits for the firearm season so far.
In addition to the second half of the firearm season starting next Thursday, other deer hunting seasons remain.
The three-day muzzleloader-only season will be held Dec. 13-15.
The seven-day split late winter firearm antlerless-only and special CWD season will be held Dec. 26-29 and Jan. 17-19.
Deer hunting regulations and permit information can be found at: http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/hunting/deer.