Iowa Deer Population: For 2023, the state estimates about 450,000 deer pre-hunt and 350,000 post-hunt. An estimated 478,000 deer in 2021, stable to slightly increasing in 2022 and 2023. About 445,000 deer in 2020, down from 460,000 in 2019, and 475,000 deer in 2018. A downward deer population trend from 2006, but about stable in 2015 after a mild winter and early spring, and into 2017. Starting in 2014, a reduced number of antlerless licenses were issued to help stabilize the herd. The population peaked at about 650,000 in 2006. Herd analysis at right.
Iowa deer hunters will be out and about December 2, 2023 Times Republican
... the archery takeoff and the gun takeoff will be close to 100,00 harvests... The remaining deer population that remains is fully capable of replacing what hunters took off the land. An estimate of the overall population of deer at the end of all seasons will be about 350,000 animals, plus or minus..,
Epizootic hemorrhagic disease outbreak affecting Iowa's whitetail deer population Deember 3, 2023 Iowa, YAHOO!News
... Epizootic hemorrhagic disease is caused by a virus that is spread by the bites of tiny flies ... So far this year, those bites have resulted in 1,876 suspected EHD deaths in Iowa’s whitetail deer, predominantly in the far southeastern part ..,
First of Iowa’s popular gun deer hunting seasons opens Dec. 2 November 21, 2023 Iowa DNR News
... Iowa’s deer population is stable to slightly increasing across much of the state, with the exception of certain parts of northwest, west central and southwest Iowa... In 2022, hunters reported harvesting 109,600 deer and Elliott is predicting a similar harvest this year..,
Climate Change Now November 20, 2023 Iowa, bvtack.com
... You can definitely see a big decrease in the deer population. It’s just everywhere you go, I’ve been talking to farmers and just in Harrison and Crawford County it’s over 75 deer dead, just found... over 1600 cases, that’s 1,600 of EHD, or Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease, had been reported ... While deer have demonstrated the ability to bounce back from EHD, the slower spread of Chronic Wasting Disease has shown steady growth ..,
Iowa DNR To Hold Virtual Public Meeting On Chronic Wasting Disease November 18, 2023 KIWA Radio
... scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 29th and will be held via Zoom. You can register at this link: https://bit.ly/IowaDNR-CWD ... as of November 14th, 263 wild deer have tested positive for Chronic Wasting Disease in 16 Iowa counties..,
Deer disease surges in Southeast Iowa after drought October 29, 2023 Iowa, Southeast Iowa Union
... Hundreds of dead deer have been spotted in Southeast Iowa over the last month ... Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease, or EHD... spreads between deer through culicoides midges: small, mosquito-like flies that bite animals to feed on blood. The mortality rate of the virus in white-tailed deer is as high as 90% ..,
Hundreds of deer fall to Iowa’s most widespread outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease October 26, 2023 Iowa, The Gazette
... The most widespread and third-most severe outbreak on record ... The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has received 1,074 reports of suspected EHD-related deer deaths so far this year ... reports span 68 of Iowa’s 99 counties ..,
Several Elk In Iowa Currently October 20, 2023 KASI-AM
... the time of year when the adult male elk wander, seeking a mate and sometimes they'll make it into Iowa... sightings are becoming more common, likely because of growing herds in both Minnesota and Wisconsin...
Deer stuck in Halloween bucket in SE Cedar Rapids October 20, 2023 Iowa, cbs2iowa.com
... a deer is running around, trapped in a Halloween pumpkin bucket. Cedar Rapids resident Taylor Fields says she saw the deer two times within the past week. She says she's concerned about the deer getting food and water...
Urban deer hunt underway in Fort Dodge October 19, 2023 Iowa, Messenger News
... This hunt, the first one to be held in the city ... complaints over the years about deer gobbling up gardens and running into streets, nearly causing crashes... There was public opposition to the hunt, and final approval of it came on a 4-3 council vote...
Iowa deer population slightly increasing October 3, 2023 Iowa DNR News
... The results of Iowa’s annual spring spotlight survey indicate the population has slightly increased over the last several years, said Elliott, who coordinates the project. “Our estimates can be variable from year to year, but for the past several years, the population has been relatively stable,” he said. He said the deer data shows statewide trends are stable to slightly increasing..,
Iowa DNR Confirms Sighting of Mountain Lion in Indianola September 8, 2023 Iowa, KNIA KRLS Radio
... The Iowa DNR has a confirmed sighting of a Mountain Lion that was seen in the northwest portion of Indianola this week, the second such sighting of a big cat in the last two years..,
Chronic Wasting Disease: Deadly deer disease shows ‘exponential growth’ in Iowa August 7, 2023 Iowa, Ottumwa Courier
... “We know based on data and how the disease has progressed in other states that we would expect to see this kind of slow progression for the first six to 10 years, and then once the disease is established, this exponential growth,” said Tyler Harms, a wildlife research biometrician for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources..,
DNR adds main beam antler length to harvest reporting requirements August 2, 2023 Iowa DNR News
... “For roughly 95 percent of the deer measured, deer with antler beams less than 14 inches were one-and-a-half-year’s old or younger, and deer antler beams 14 inches and over were two-and-a-half-year’s old or older.” ... this information will provide age structure to the DNR’s population models and produce a better overall picture of Iowa’s deer herd...
Chronic wasting disease found in Marshall County deer August 1, 2023 Iowa DNR News
... A tissue sample collected in mid-June from a road killed adult buck deer in Marshall County has tested positive for chronic wasting disease. With the addition of Marshall County, 260 deer have tested positive in 16 Iowa counties since 2013..,
Weather conditions affecting white‐tailed deer harvest in Iowa. 2023 - The Journal of Wildlife Management
... We examined the effects of weather on deer harvest during the Iowa, USA, firearms seasons from 2006–2021 using a generalized mixed-effects linear model. Weather conditions during the hunting season were related to overall deer harvest. Specifically, deer harvest was positively correlated with snowfall on opening day and negatively correlated with average minimum temperature, average snow depth, rainfall on opening day, and number of rainfall and snowfall days...
Fort Dodge, The hunt is on June 9, 2023 Iowa, The Messenger
... The measure was approved on a 5-2 vote on the second reading and by a 4-3 vote on the third reading. Having an ordinance pass with a declining majority on each of three votes is rare. The council’s action sent the matter to the Iowa Natural Resources Commission. The commission unanimously approved a long list of proposed hunts. There was no discussion of the Fort Dodge hunt...
Pair of all-white deer spotted in Iowa June 2, 2023 Iowa, KCCI Des Moines
... The Fayette County Sheriff's Office shared photos of a pair of all-white deer spotted Thursday morning outside West Union. "Just a reminder that they are a protected species and can not be hunted," ...
Fawning season is here, deer are on the move May 23, 2023 DNR News
... Callers report finding an “abandoned” fawn in an unusual place, like a flowerbed or small patch of cover. Rest assured this is normal deer behavior. “The doe searches out an isolated location where she feels safe and on occasion those places are not what we may think of as ideal. She chose that location because it made sense to her,” ...
Annual surveillance confirms 96 deer and three new counties for chronic wasting disease May 16, 2023 Iowa Department of Natural Resources
... Chronic wasting disease was confirmed in 96 deer that were tested during the 2022 monitoring season, including deer from three new counties – Jasper, Grundy, and Lucas. With the addition of Jasper County, chronic wasting disease has again come into central Iowa...
Iowa's 'other' deer season has begun March 12, 2023 Globe Gazette
... For an increasing number of outdoor-minded households, spring shed hunting is becoming a traditional kid-friendly family event... For a select group of dedicated hard cores, the search for antlers becomes an obsession ...
Iowa deer harvest shows increase February 28, 2023 Oelwein Daily Register
... Iowa hunters harvested more than 109,600 deer during the 2022 season, which reflected a success rate of between 30 and 35%, one that, the DNR reported, is in line with that from recent years..,
Three counties see first cases of CWD in deer February 13, 2023 Iowa, Radio Iowa
... during the recent season ... about 84 deer tested positive across the state this year... out of about 5000 deer that were sampled ... Plymouth County, Grundy County, and Lucas County all detected their first positive case ..,
Number of deer taken by hunters increased this year February 8, 2023 Iowa, Radio Iowa
... [DNR state deer biologist, Jace Elliott] says. “And we’re well within our management objective, which is basically to manage the statewide deer population at the level that it was in the mid-1990s. And we’re more or less there and have been for years.” ..,
Hunters harvest nearly 110,000 deer during 2022-23 season February 7, 2023 Iowa, Iowa DNR News
... Iowa’s 2022 deer harvest increased seven percent over the 2021 season, due, in part to the new Excess Tag January Antlerless Season approved by the Iowa Legislature last spring... Overall, hunters tagged deer at a rate of 30-35 percent which is similar to previous years, for a total reported harvest of more than 109,600 deer... The deer population model indicates the herd size is stable to slightly increasing and is within the goal of the Iowa deer study advisory committee..,
New bill would allow 'airbows' for Iowa deer hunting January 31, 2023 Iowa Capital Dispatch
... Senate File 138 would not allow airbows to be used during bow season but rather for any deer season that allows firearms. “This just seems like the perfect weapon to poach deer with,” said Fred Long, president of the Iowa Conservation Alliance ...
Iowa Capital Dispatch
... Out-of-state hunters pay a premium to shoot deer in Iowa, and the demand for those licenses regularly exceeds the long-running 6,000 limit. The state received about 10,700 applications for the licenses in 2022 and about 11,300 in 2021...
Elk appearing on trail cameras in central and western Iowa January 10, 2023
Elk seem to be visiting Iowa more frequently each fall, and thanks to social media, their visits are now shared at the speed of downloads among tens of thousands of people among the various social networks. Most of these sightings are in western Iowa due to the proximity of the larger wild elk herd found in the Black Hills of South Dakota and in central and western Nebraska ..,
These are the 'good old days' of deer hunting January 5, 2022 Iowa, The Gazette
...White-tailed deer were eliminated from most of Eastern Iowa by the 1860s. Total legal protection of deer in 1898 was too little and too late. Iowa State professor emeritus James Dinsmore said the deer was extirpated as of 1900. Then regulations, deer releases, and changing attitudes revived the herd to the point where Iowa legalized a new deer season in 1953...
Iowa DNR Posts Chronic Wasting Numbers December 28, 2022 Eagle1023fm
... The Iowa Department of Natural Resources estimates that the state has a deer herd of 500,000, writes The Associated Press ... 1,100 samples have been processed, with 11 deer testing positive so far...
Donated Iowa venison isn't tested for protein that kills deer December 1, 2022 Iowa Capital Dispatch
... The Iowa Department of Natural Resources recommends that all hunters test their deer for chronic wasting disease before eating the animals’ meat, but it does not yet require any testing for venison that is donated to food pantries...
Two more Iowa counties increase testing for Chronic Wasting Disease November 21, 2022 KCRG
... So far this year, one animal harvested from Wayne County has been confirmed positive for CWD...
For Iowa’s deer hunters, the wait is nearly over, shotgun deer seasons begin Dec. 3 November 15, 2022 Iowa DNR News
... “Our deer population is stable to slightly increasing statewide, so hunters should expect to see numbers similar to last year,” said Tyler Harms, with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR)... The Iowa DNR has a goal to manage the herd to provide an annual harvest of 100,000-120,000 deer..,
Iowa deer population slightly increasing October 19, 2022 Iowa, bellevueheraldleader.com/
... The results of Iowa’s annual spring spotlight survey indicate the population has slightly increased over the last couple years, said Elliott, who coordinates the project. “Our estimates can be variable from year to year, but we observed about 4 percent more deer during the 2021 survey compared to in 2019,” ...
Harvest, hunting put deer on the move in Iowa October 4, 2022 Iowa, Radio Iowa
... bowhunting season is underway and Jace Elliott says that is one thing that will increase movements. “It certainly will. You know, as more hunters enter the woods, it will slightly disrupt your movements. And yeah, we will see deer maybe change their habits a bit due to hunting pressure,” ...
Hunters with bows and arrows begin deer hunting Saturday September 29, 2022 Iowa, Radio Iowa
... “We are seeing sustained declines, although very small declines year to year when it comes to participation in any hunting season in Iowa,” Elliott says. “The exception was 2020, which saw an increase in license sales and hunter participants — which we mostly attributed to the COVID pandemic.” ...
Iowa deer population slightly increasing September 27, 2022 Iowa DNR News
... “Our estimates can be variable from year to year, but we observed about 4 percent more deer during the 2021 survey compared to in 2019,” he said. “So far, 2022 has been a relatively minor year for epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) compared to the last couple years. We’re hopeful that this will help deer populations recover in regions of Iowa that experienced more major outbreaks in years prior.” He said the deer data shows statewide trends are stable to slightly increasing ..,
How Escapee Deer Helped Rebuild Iowa's Deer Herd September 26, 2022 Iowa, North American Whitetail
... “In 1885, W.B. Cuppy, of Avoca, Iowa, purchased five deer, and placed them in a paddock on his 600-acre farm. By 1900 they had increased to 32 head; and then one night some one kindly opened the gate ... by 1912 the local deer herd had increased to 400 ..,
While some cities see urban deer hunt success, Iowa City struggles to get its program off the ground September 19, 2022 Iowa, The Gazette
... In 2010, Iowa City hired private sharpshooters with White Buffalo to thin the deer population within the city limits. A study showed the hunt decreased the deer population, but eight years later, the population was back up over 10,000 in surveyed areas of the city...
Whitetails explored at KPL by Iowa freelance journalist September 1, 2022 Iowa, Daily Democrat
... ... In 1953, it was estimated that there were 12,632 deer in Iowa, and the first official deer season was approved by the Iowa Legislature...
Fort Dodge, Urban deer hunt gets final OK in FD on 4-3 vote August 23, 2022 Iowa, Messenger News
... “I don’t think you can honestly say we have an over-population if we don’t have an accurate count,” she said. “I respectfully suggest you do it the right way and get a DNR count and see if we do have an over-population of deer.” ...
A proposed urban deer hunt in Fort Dodge August 20, 2022 Iowa, Messenger News
... Crouse started a Facebook page called “Fort Dodge Deer Friends” to encourage those who oppose the proposed hunt to contact their councilperson and voice their concerns. “I found that most of the people I talked to personally were against it, but they didn’t know that there was anything they could do about it ...
Midwest states vary in how they handle risk of lead in venison donated to food banks June 6, 2022 Iowa, Missouri Independent
... Iowa stands out among Midwestern states in requiring a label warning about the potential hazard of lead ammunition and the fragments it can leave behind in shot-harvested game meat like venison. Donated venison in Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska come with no similar warning label...
Fawning season is here, deer are on the move May 31, 2022 Iowa, DNR News
... The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will not be rehabbing or co-mingling fawns with other deer to avoid the potential of spreading chronic wasting disease – or other disease - to new areas..,
Bill to create new deer hunting season, with AR-15s May 24,2022 Iowa, Radio Iowa
... The range that I’m familiar with this type of weapon and round is ... about two and a half miles ... bill also calls on the Iowa Insurance Division, the Iowa DOT, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and Iowa State University to complete a study of the state’s deer herd by the fall of 2023...
New Ambassadors Sought to Help Fight Chronic Wasting Disease in Iowa White-tailed Deer May 17, 2022 Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
... Chronic Wasting Disease “ambassadors” will be trained in the science-based management of CWD, both prevention and testing, and how to educate others within their community by wildlife biologists from Iowa State and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Participants can include hunters and non-hunters, community members and anyone interested in wildlife conservation...
State lawmakers vote to lower illegal deer hunting fines April 6, 2022 Iowa, who13.com
... would lower the fine of unlawfully killing an antlerless deer from $1,500 to $500; and creates a statewide antlerless deer hunting season in February ...
Moose seen wandering around northwest Iowa dies March 30, 2022 Iowa, KEYC
... the cow-moose died of natural causes linked to aspiration pneumonia...
Five plead guilty in western Iowa poaching ring March 30, 2022 Iowa, Radio Iowa
... 48 wildlife charges against five people from western Iowa with nearly $83,000 in fines and liquidated damages... recovered many animals that had been taken illegally — including some 70 deer...
CWD, Two Appanoose County deer found to be diseased March 23, 2022 Iowa, Ottumwa Courier\
... Samples from 407 deer in Wayne have been tested as part of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) effort to monitor for chronic wasting disease, resulting in 19 confirmed positives from the 2021-2022 hunting season. Two deer in Appanoose County also tested positive..,
Impressive displays at Deer Classic Times March 12, 2022 Iowa, Republican
... Regarding carrying capacity, the biologist noted that Iowa land could support a total population of four times as many deer as we now have ... From high deer population numbers of twenty years ago, the DNR now tries to manage hunters and hunting to keep the post hunt surviving breeding population of deer at about 300,000...
... To test the hypothesis that SARS-CoV-2 is circulating in deer, 283 retropharyngeal lymph node (RPLN) samples collected from 151 freeliving and 132 captive deer in Iowa from April 2020 through January of 2021 were assayed for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. Ninety-four of the 283 (33.2%) deer samples were positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA as assessed by RT-PCR. Notably, following the November 2020 peak of human cases in Iowa, and coinciding withthe onset of winter and the peak deer hunting season, SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in 80 of 97 (82.5%) RPLN samples collected over a 7-wk period...
A 2018 Iowa population report (p,4) estimates the deer herd "is slightly increasing in 2018." Research published in 2019 estimated these average deer populations for the state for 2013-2017 using three different models. Averaging the three models for each year gives these estimates: 432,534 in 2012, 479,363 in 2013, 421,765 in 2014, 447,941 in 2015, 455,225 in 2016 and 440,356 in 2017. Interpreting graphical information from the state's 2018 report indicates about an 8 percent increase in the pre-fawn deer population, for a 2018 population of about 475,000.
Preliminary harvest data fell by more than 10 percent in 2019, but the spotlight survey for 2019 showed in increase of about 8 percent. Comments from state agents indicate a stable to declining population in 2019 after an outbreak of EHD in central Iowa reduced the herd somewhat. A 3 percent decline is used to reconcile this information for a rough estimate of 460,000 deer in 2019. The state survey shows a 3 percent decline in 2020 for a population of about 445,000 deer.
A downward trend into 2016 from 2006 when state lawmakers instructed the DNR to reduce the deer population. About stable in 2015 after a mild winter and early spring. In 2014, the state issued 10,000 fewer antlerless deer licenses in an effort to stabilize the population, no antlerless licenses in the northwest where deer populations have fallen dramatically. DNR maintained reduced antlerless licenses numbers for 2015, 2016 and 2017 to stabilize the population. The state issued a document around 2017 estimating the after hunt population at 400,000.
A state estimate of 425,000 - 435,000 deer in 2013, the deer herd had been on a planned decline since 2002. The long winter of 2013-14 further reduced the herd into 2014. Drought and EHD accelerated the decline in 2012. An estimate of 470,000 in 2010 and 13,000 in 1953. An estimate of 500,000 in 2009.
Iowa’s deer population peaked at about 650,000 in 2006 (data are all before the hunt). By 2014 the deer population had fallen back to levels of the 1990's. The 2015 population was about 33 percent below the 2009 population. The 2014 harvest was 39 percent below 2006 peak. In 1997 an estimated population of 300,000 deer after the 1996 harvest of over 100,000 deer. In 1990 about 200,000 whitetail deer in the state.
Chronic Wasting Disease A couple of cases in captive herds - one in Davis county in 2012. Later, 284 of the 356 captive deer at the Davis County hunting operation tested positive. The first wild deer tested positive in 2013 in Allamakee County, followed by three in 2014, two in 2015, twelve in 2016, and eight in 2017. In the 2018-19 hunting season, 14 cases. A total of 46 by early fall 2019 with two captive deer farms testing positive in late 2019. For the 2019-2020 hunting season 43 tested positive out of about 7,000 tested. A total of 91 positives by late 2020. For the 2020-21 season, 21 new positives for a total of 111. For the 2021-22 season, 36 positives from some 5,000 deer samples with two new counties, Greene County in central Iowa and Fremont County in southwest Iowa, bringing the total number of counties to 12. For the 2022-23 season 96 deer tested positive out of about 5,000 tested. As of August, 2023, 260 deer have tested positive in 16 Iowa counties since 2013.
Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease In 2023 the most wide spread outbreak, first reported in Iowa in 2012.
History White-tailed deer were reported to be abundant when European settlers arrived in Iowa in the early 1800's. Clearing and cultivating of land for agriculture initially improved habitat, but over hunting for food and hides rapidly reduced deer numbers. By 1880 deer were rarely sighted and in 1898 the deer season was closed. Deer had been virtually eliminated from all parts of the state by 1898. Around 1900, someone opened the gate on a pen that held 32 deer, helping the deer recovery in Iowa.
The herd was rebuilt by trapping and relocating deer from other states, and by natural immigration. In 1936 there were only 500 to 700 deer in the state. A 1947 survey put the number at 1,650. By 1950, about 10,000 deer. When hunting resumed in 1953 there were around 12,000 to 15,000 deer. Another 1953 estimate of 12,632.
Population estimates for 1990 to 2007