Kansas Deer Population:  An estimated 650,000 deer pre-hunt in 2016, about the same in 2017.  About 630,000 pre-hunt in 2015 and 600,000 deer pre-hunt in 2014 and 2013.   The herd was virtually extinct from 1900 into the 1950's.   Herd analysis at right.  Historical Kansas deer hunting data and news archive.

Kansas Deer News

2017 Great Plains Deer Forecast September 19, 2017 Kansas, Game & Fish
... Deer numbers are stable ... the range of mule deer has been gradually moving westward...

Wichita Eagle
... Last fall, two deer from Stafford County tested positive for chronic wasting disease ...  a German study showed that the CWD prions had been passed to macaque monkeys by feeding them meat that contained CWD ..,

Outlook good for hunters as hunting season starts September 2, 2017, Kansas, Pratt Tribune
...  deer numbers are pretty steady. There have been some ebb and flow because of disease but the disease problem has decreased lately. Deer numbers have leveled out and hunters should have some good opportunities this year..,

Disguised drones boost wildlife management August 25, 2017 Kansas, McPherson Sentinel
... If a deer or a cow has a hotter than normal temperature, it might be pregnant or ill ... We’ve been working on some projects recently where we’re flying over deer that are worth over a million dollars each... We can provide the software to count wildlife...

Kansas' pet deer shooting easily avoided with Texas rules August 17, 2017 Wichita Eagle
... Angered over a December event where a Kansas game warden shot a tame deer, in a family’s yard ... “The laws in Kansas and Texas both say you can’t keep a pet deer ... but in Texas if that deer can move about on its own, and you’re not confining it, it’s not illegal. In Kansas, if they think it’s a pet and they just come and shoot it.” ...

... next spring dozens of deer will be wearing high-tech tracking collars ...  We want to know how many are dying from what causes. .. As recently as 30 years ago, mule deer were common over most of central and western Kansas...  Now, they’re rare in those same areas. Nationally, nearly all states with mule deer have experienced population declines...

KDWPT: 30 Kansas deer reported for foot rot disease in 2016 July 8, 2017 Kansas, Capital-Journal Online
... a rare type of potentially fatal foot rot disease... hardest hit counties were in the southeast portion of Kansas ... “Diagnostics showed the hoof disease story is more about trauma to the hooves with the onset of secondary bacterial infections,” ...

...  Chronic Wasting Disease isn't new, but it's mostly affected deer in the northwest part of Kansas.  "It has gradually spread south and east ... "I'm talking about decades for deer to decrease in population and eventually even become eliminated or extinct in certain areas,"  [Biologist Matt Peek] ..,

Quincy deer park at veterans home to be improved April 2, 2017 Kansas, Wichita Eagle
... a pasture mix of red and white clover, timothy, rye and orchard grass... The park dates to 1858 ... [Quincy Park deer]

Wild Fire's Impact March 30, 2017 Kansas, KDWPT News
 ...  ... Rough estimates indicate that 25 percent to 30 percent of deer inhabiting the burned area may have been killed ... the burned area makes up about 20 percent of Deer Management Unit 16, so the loss of deer for the unit is estimated at about 5 percent..,

Doe shot in head in Barton County March 21, 2017 Kansas, KAKE TV
... doe was poached in southeast Barton County either late Saturday or early Sunday... Operation Game Thief at 877-426-3843

... [ March 23, 2017 in Topeka] evening portion of the meeting will convene at 6:30 p.m. for the Public Hearing. Commissioners will hear proposals for, and vote on, the 2017 fall seasons for antelope, elk, turkey and deer ...

Mother Nature will be tested in healing burned prairies March 11, 2017 Kansas, Wichita Eagle
... wildfires in Clark and Comanche counties ... saw a herd of 19 deer. Some carried deep burns. I’m sure some of those have since died. Carcasses of many more littered the prairie... 

Deer deaths persist as state awaits results of foot rot tests February 18, 2017 Kansas, Capital-Journal Online
...  “I haven’t received any more reports from the field. I think it has run its course for this year.” ...

Kansas game wardens have an online posse of more than 42000 people February 16, 2017 Wichita Eagle
... The game warden’s Facebook page is the second-most followed law enforcement page in Kansas ...

  He took one shot. And now two deer are free. February 7, 2017 Kansas, Wichita Eagle
... came across two buck deer with their antlers locked together ... took careful aim and shot where the antlers were tangled and the bucks ran away free...

... wildlife disease coordinator with the KDWPT, said he is working with a cooperative lab based in Georgia to try and figure out the cause of the high numbers of foot rot reports ... We see cases every year like this, but this year seems to be a worse year for hoof disease ...

... the deer was initially shot in the “body cavity.” ... “They shot several more times because at that point it was moving away from them ... So it took several shots to put it down finally... the deer’s mother was shot, and Taryn says her mother instantly connected with her...
     Kansas Family's Pet Deer Shot by Game Warden January 6, 2017 ABC News
... A western Kansas family is outraged after game wardens killed a deer that was allowed inside their house and took walks with the family... Taryn Mcgaughey filmed the wardens herding the animal toward where it was shot... video
     Kansas family's pet deer shot by game warden January 4, 2017 Wichita Eagle
... There was no reason for her to be killed ... She chose to stay.  I never kept her from going away and being with other deer.” ...
     Family asks why game warden killed pet deer December 21, 2016 Kansas, KSN-TV
... Kim was issued a ticket for having a pet deer ... later that day, a game warden came back saying he would put the deer down... Kansas law does have a statute on domesticated deer but says you must have a permit from the animal health commissioner...

Kansas' lead biologist turning pure sportsman December 16, 2016 Wichita Eagle
... After 43 years ... Lloyd Fox is ready to retire ... The sleeping elephant in the room is (chronic wasting disease),” he said. “It will eventually be a problem. CWD will change the nature of of the deer herd in Kansas...

KLA Policy Addresses Issues Affecting Livestock Production December 6, 2016 Kansas, CattleNetwork.com
...  Policy on deer hunting permits was approved by KLA [Kansas Livestock Association] members. They support amending state law to allow landowners and tenants to acquire a deer tag or permit that could be transferred to a resident or nonresident for use on their respective property...

Chronic Wasting in Kansas November 25, 2016  Chronicle-Tribune
... The first Kansas CWD deer was detected in 2005, in the northwestern part of the state.  Kansas has had 136 deer or elk test positive for CWD. Rawlins and Sheridan counties, in northwest Kansas, have held 80 percent of the cases ...  CWD was first identified in captive mule deer along the Colorado-Wyoming border in 1967. The disease began after the deer were exposed to scrapie, a disease that’s fatal to sheep and goats...

Kansas wildlife and parks predicts quality deer season November 25, 2016 Kansas City Star
... “We had that downward trend in about 2011 and 2012, but we’ve been pretty stable since,” ... Kansas’ record deer harvest was around 110,000 in 2001. That was when higher speed limits resulted in higher numbers of deer/vehicle accidents, and legislative pressure to lower the deer population led to high numbers of permits for shooting whitetail does...

Agency seeks help in tracking down illegal deer hunter November 22, 2016 Kansas, Ottawaherald.com
... an unidentified man used a rifle to illegally shoot a deer Saturday morning at 4472 Pawnee Road near Wellsville ...

Deer antler damage to trees can be prevented November 20, 2016 Kansas, The Kansas City Star
... The most effective method is to construct a rigid fence out and around the trees. Start by using three to four heavy-duty metal fence posts. Drive them into the ground at the dripline of evergreen trees. For deciduous trees, put them two feet or more from the trunk. The fence posts provide a rigid object for the deer to rub against...

Targeting the ethics, legality and dangers of guaranteed kill that 'canned hunting' provides November 14, 2016 Kansas, fox4kc.com
... there are over 1,000 canned hunting operations spanning 28 states, including Kansas and Missouri... animals in these hunts are human raised, hand-fed, then trapped in a fence and shot a close range... Boone and Crockett ... don't recognize kills in record books. The way the animals are sometimes killed also gets Holloway fired up. “To make him suffer just to avoid making holes in the hide it's wrong it's not ethical,” ...

Kansas rich with deer October 28, 2016 Kansas, Pratt Tribune
... Southeast Kansas has typically contained the densest deer population in the state... 

Why you should be especially vigilant driving next month October 27, 2016 Kansas, Wichita Eagle
... fawns about 5 months old make up a sizable percentage of roadkills. “During the rut, the doe kicks them off and they’re on their own for the first time in their life and not just following their mother,” ... an increase in the deer population. [in 2016] ...

... poaching of deer in northeast Trego County near the Ellis county line...

... Kansas voters will decide in November whether to amend the state’s constitution  ...  Public hunting and fishing shall be a preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife... Elaine Giessel of the Kansas Sierra Club said the club’s parent organization has opposed such constitutional amendments. She, too, thinks the language of the proposal is too vague ...

... We have just experienced a summer rainfall pattern that has produced excellent growth of deer habitat ... Unlike the years of drought, we should expect more fawns this fall.” ...


Depredation Tags: Are Farmers Gaming the System? September 13, 2016 Kansas, North American Whitetail Magazine
... The discovery of five dead deer on a Kansas public hunting area has reignited a simmering debate ...  was perfectly legal. The deer were killed by a local farmer... Kansas, along with virtually every other state that has whitetail deer, give farmers and other landowners what are known as depredation or kill permits...

... five mutilated deer carcasses that had been left to rot on state-owned land ... several of the does had full milk sacks, meaning some fawns likely were orphaned by the wasteful killing ... depredation isn’t considered recreational or “fair-chase” hunting, but rather a tool to cull deer ... the non-hunting public, along with a lot of hunters, would have a serious fit if they knew KDWPT and farmers were shooting deer and letting them be wasted ...

Elk and Either-Species Deer Permit Applications Due July 8 Kansas, Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks
... Deer Firearm Either-species/Either-sex permit (white-tailed or mule deer buck, doe or fawn): General Resident – $52.50; Resident Landowner/Tenant – $32.50; Resident Youth (15 and younger): $22.50; Nonresident Tenant – $97.50 Preference Point – $11.50 ...   Elk Firearm Either-sex: General Resident – $302.50; Landowner/Tenant – $152.50; Resident Youth (15 and younger) – $127.50; Nonresident Tenant – $152.50...   Elk (antlerless): General Resident – $152.50; Landowner/Tenant – $77.50; Resident Youth (15 and younger) – $52.50; Nonresident tenant – $77.50

...  a printing error sent duplicate mailings to more than 3,200 hunters in early June ... 
Kansas Raises Cost of Non-Resident Deer Tags June 7, 2016 North American Whitetail Magazine
... a non-resident deer license will increase from $315 to $415, and the cost of a required small-game license will rise from $70 to $95 ...nWe were able to hold our license fees steady since 2002 ...

...  It just ran from one side of the garage to another looking over the edge. … Fowler sat in the middle of the garage and spoke to the deer until it calmed down ... “The deer had to be pretty intelligent, because I pointed the way I wanted it to go … and it went that way,” ...

A deer gets in and and swims around with the swimmers during the 2016 Kansas City Triathlon. - May 16, 2016


... The Senate voted ... against a measure addressing cases in which the state’s wildlife department seizes antlers and other animal parts from poached game.... would have had to offer the parts first to the owner of the land ...

     Legislators take pointed positions on simmering antler dispute April 30, 2016 Topeka Capital Journal
... The Senate dug in its heels for the second consecutive year Saturday by rejecting legislation adopted by the House to force state regulators to release to a landowner a set of prized deer antlers poached five years ago in Osage County...

Effects of wildlife after a wildfire April 25, 2016 Kansas, Hutchinson News
... Anderson Creek fire ... southern Kansas ...  a few deer on the newly emerging grasses...  hadn’t found any dead deer, but had found some porcupines and squirrels.  ... 

Kansas data:  Summer rains in 2016 increased fawn survival, increasing the deer population to roughly 650,000 pre-hunt -- about the same in 2017.  Fire killed about 5 percent of deer in Unit 16 in 2016.  In 2014 and 2015, the state reduced antlerless tags and the number of days in the hunting season to increase the population and bringing the 2015 population to around 630,000 pre-hunt, a slow increase.   The population was below carrying capacity in 2015.  About 600,000 deer estimated pre-hunt in 2014 and 2013.   The population was trending down after three years of drought and reduced habitat resulting from less land in the Conservation Reserve Program.  In 2015 an estimated mule deer population of 51,000.  The decline continued into 2016 with a rough estimate of 50,000.  To support populations, significant reductions in mule deer permits for 2015 in eastern zones, some reductions in the west.  Further reductions in 2016. Densest populations in the southeast. 
      Total population after hunting estimated at 510,000 in 2013 and 2014, 511,000 in 2012, 550,000 in 2010. A significant outbreak of EHD in 2012, bringing average trend over the past several years down, particularly in southwest Kansas. Drought 2010 to 2012.  Hunter success around 58% in 2014.  Increasing geographic fragmentation of deer populations and increasing predatory pressure from coyotes.  Mule deer populations are struggling, particularly in the east.  In general, the Kansas deer population is below carrying capacity.  Western Kansas has more CRP land and better habitat.  The rut peaks in Kansas around November 13.  The record harvest in 2001 is attributed to an significant increase in doe permits after speeds were increased on Kansas highway, resulting in more deer vehicle collisions, and an effort to reduce the deer population.
     Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) was first detected in northwester Kansas in 2005.  As of November, 2016, 136 had tested positive, 80 percent in Rawlins and Sheridan counties.  Spreading to the south and east, a wildlife biologists forecasts that deer populations could be drastically reduced in coming decades.
      Prior to settlement there were large herds of mule deer and white-tails were abundant in the timbered areas of eastern Kansas.  By 1900, all big game animals had been hunted to virtual extinction in the state.  Kansas was one of the last states to restore the deer population, the only state without deer in 1947, sightings began in the 1950s. An estimated 30,000 deer in 1965, the year of the first modern deer season,  after efforts to restore the deer population; deer harvest of 1504 with almost 4,000 licenses issued.  The 2013 harvest was 89,664 deer. During the 2012-13 season hunters took 94,70 deer - 91,357 white-tails and 2,71 mule deer.  About 52.6 percent of the white-tails were antlerless, 15.9% of the mule deer.  About 123,195 deer hunters who purchased 123,195 licenses that season.  Mule deer can be found in the western two-thirds of the state.
     Elk population of about 10,000, many in eastern Kentucky.
     Mountain Lions were gone from the state by the early 1900's, 13 verified sightings from 2007 to 2015.

Other useful links:
Report Sick and dead deer for KDWPT at this link: surveymonkey.com/s/WHZKVNS 

- Deer Damage Control Guidelines, Department of Wildlife 



KDWPT News Releases