Late Season Deer Hunting

Category: press release

 Dec 22nd, 2009 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Dec 22nd, 2009 at 12:00 AM

Late December snow-and ice-will test cold weather hunters in the final days of Iowa’s deer seasons.

The key to success…is to target feeding areas. “This time of year, deer really zero in on harvested crop fields and food plots. With the colder weather and shorter days, it’s probably advantageous for hunters to set up near those food sources,” suggests Tom Litchfield, deer research biologist for the Department of Natural Resources. An added twist for hunters to consider is standing corn which remains in some Iowa fields.

Iowa’s late muzzleloader season runs through January 10. The second ‘split’ of the state’s bow season ends that day, too. Iowa’s January antlerless season begins on January 11 and continues through the month in 42 counties, providing hunters purchased available deer tags for that season. Many urban or park special management hunts continue through the end of January, also.

“The popularity of the late muzzleloader season has been slowly increasing,” notes Litchfield. “Hunters who hadn’t purchased an ‘any deer’ license for an earlier firearms season, have opportunity to hunt for a buck…actually a pretty good one.” With the breeding season and heavy pressure from the shotgun seasons now past, Litchfield says typically, there are plenty of bucks remaining which tend to orient around food sources.

A strong storm system, as we are seeing this week, increases the challenge. With ice and more snow added to the landscape, deer spend more time feeding. Litchfield says if a weather front moves in, especially one with very cold temperatures, deer can be seen feeding just about any time of the day.

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