A recent survey by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources found that the number of deer harvested in the state is lower than at this point last year.
So far, 16,763 deer have been harvested, and at this point last year, the number was 19,567.
Despite the drop in numbers, outdoors writer Steve Sarley said he isn’t concerned about it.
“The numbers are down for the harvest this year so far, and that’s pretty predictable based on weather,” Sarley said.
Sarley said the warm weather lasted longer this year, so deer haven’t moved out of the cornfields as early as they normally do.
Sarley said he thinks that as the weather gets colder, the number of deer harvested will go up.
“So we get some cool weather, and the hunters will be out there again,” Sarley said. “I think the numbers will come back. I think that the harvest numbers by the end of the season will be similar to last year.”
Since the number of deer harvested is expected to pick back up toward the end of hunting season, there shouldn’t be any impact on the state’s economy, Sarley said, adding that hunters are still spending money and booking hunting trips around the state, and that the deer population in the state is thriving.
“The numbers that they get when they count the deer and do surveys say that there are just phenomenal amounts of deer out there,” Sarley said. “Let’s just give it some time, and as the season goes forward, I think the numbers will be fine.”
Deer hunting season in Illinois ends in January.
–Illinois News Network