Ice storm doesn't dampen deer harvest

Saturday, December 29, 2007 | 8:54 p.m. CST; updated 7:33 p.m. CDT, Thursday, July 17, 2008

Despite a heavy ice storm across much of the state, the antlerless-only portion of the 2007 firearms deer harvest from Dec. 8 to 16 was the third largest of all time.

“A short weather event doesn’t have all that much effect (because) we can catch up during other parts of our hunting season,” said deer biologist Lonnie Hansen of the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Across the state, hunters checked 19,472 deer during the antlerless-only season. The total was down 8 percent from last year and was the smallest number since the season went from four to nine days in 2003.

The total number of deer killed during firearms seasons thus far this year is 260,162, Hansen said. That includes 554 killed during the urban portion of the firearms season, 12,267 during the youth portion, 214,494 during the regular November portion and 13,372 during the muzzleloader portion.

“Overall, we’ve had a very good season,” Hansen said.

Hunters nearly doubled the number of checked deer during the last two days of the antlerless-only hunt. Heavy ice and some snow early in the season kept numbers down and many hunters out of the woods. By the end of the first week, only a little more than 10,000 deer had been killed.

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