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12/7/2012 1:13:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
IDNR releases firearm deer season totals
SPRINGFIELD - Firearm deer hunters in Illinois took a preliminary total of 99,324 deer, with hunters in Lawrence County taking 592 of those, during the seven-day firearm deer season on Nov. 16-18 and Nov. 29-Dec. 2.

This year's preliminary firearm season harvest total compares with the 97,820 deer taken during the 2011 firearm season., according to information recently released by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR).

The preliminary second-season (Nov. 29-Dec. 2) harvest total was 27,213, compared with the 31,259 deer taken by hunters during the second segment of the season last year. This year's preliminary first-season (Nov. 18-20) deer harvest was 72,111, compared with a first-season harvest of 66,501 in 2011. 

The preliminary harvest totals include deer taken in all counties in which firearm deer hunting is permitted, as well as at Chain O'Lakes State Park in Lake County.

In Lawrence County, the 2012 deer harvest was up slightly from 2011 - 592 this year, compared to 560 a year ago.

Hunters with Lawrence County permits killed 432 deer during the first season and 160 during the second season.

The 2012 deer totals for area counties are as follow: Crawford 1165 (831 first season, 334 second season), Richland 751 (532-219), Wabash 311 (216-95), Jasper 1160 (852-308), and Clay 1217 (909-308).

Three of the five area counties turned in totals up from 2011, while two saw a decrease.

Crawford County went up 29, while Clay was up 66 and Wabash saw an increase of 33. In Richland County, 66 fewer deer were taken than in 2011, and the Jasper County total was down 99.

"If you enjoy deer hunting in warm, spring-like weather, this was the season for you," said IDNR Forest Wildlife Program Manager Paul Shelton.  "One of the benefits of having a split firearm deer season is that we typically avoid getting caught in a single weather pattern that might negatively impact the overall harvest.  This year conditions were much more favorable during the first season and less so during the second, but I think we're right on track with our harvest in most areas."

Preliminary harvest reports show the top five county totals for deer taken during the seven-day firearm season were Pike (3,068), Fulton (2,815), Adams (2,534), Jo Daviess (2,534), and Randolph (2,221).


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