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South Dakota’s deer harvest down in 2009

May 31, 2010 at 10:08 PM

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The Game, Fish and Parks Department says the deer harvest in South Dakota last fall declined for the first time in 10 years.

The agency used surveys to estimate hunters killed 69,000 white-tailed deer and 18,000 mule deer last fall. That’s 4,000 fewer than the 2008 harvest but 41,000 more than in the season 10 years ago.

Most of the 2009 reduction came in the East River, muzzleloader, youth and Black Hills seasons. Officials believe the weather and unharvested crops made it harder for hunters to get a deer. Hunter success dropped from 48 percent in 2008 to 43 percent last year.

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