South Dakota Deer Population and Management Archive - South Dakota

View the archive by scrolling through the window below. Historic deer hunt data is below the Archive window on the left column with links to sources. A list of all articles in the Archive is below the window.

Annual Deer Kill, Estimated from Survey

1975 35,000

1976 29,500

1977 23,000

1978 19,500

1979 19,800

1980 32,000

1981 20,500

1982 35,000

1983 48,000

1984 56,000

1985 49,000

1986 49,000

1987 39,500

1988 44,000

1989 55,000

1990 53,000

1991 56,500

1992 62,000

1993 65,000

1994 65,718

1995 59,000

1996 52,000

1997 50,000

1998 46,000

1999 48,500

2000 51,000

2001 59,000

2002 61,500

2003 69,954

2004 74,000

2005 84,500

2006: 88,000

2007: 88,500

2008: 91,500

2009: 87,350

2010: 94,726

2011: 85,160

2012: 71,500

2013: 55,483

2014: 46,526

2015: 52,589

2016: 53,027

2017: 51,932

2018: 51,926

2019: 50,736

2020: 59,071


Deer Information from 2017 plan


Deer Reports


Most data for 1975 to 2005 estimated from graph, so approximate.


In 2015, 30,687 whitetail bucks, 15,997 whitetail does, 4,888 mule bucks and 1,017 mule does


In 2013: 25,199 whitetail bucks, 23,275 whitetail does, 4,251 mule bucks. 2,758 mule does.

In 2012: 62,900 were whitetails (30,800 bucks, 32,100 does) and 8,600 were mule deer (4,900 bucks, 3,700 does.)


In 2011: 33,285 whitetail bucks, 40,772 whitetail does, 5,675 mule bucks and 5,428 mule does. Hunting stats

Hard winter of 2010-2011 reduced herd.


A Food Habits Study of Deer in the Southern Black Hills, 1970


2011 - 2020 Elk Hunt


2016 Elk Season



A List of Articles in the Archive

..........2021

South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks: Number of deer tags for 2021 reduced to increase East River Population May 17, 2021

The Hunt For Habitat Super Tag is Back! March 3, 2021 South Dakota

.........2020

GFP Commission Proposes Elk Seasons January 23, 2020 South Dakota

Moose here, moose there, moose in South Dakota! November 6, 2020 South Dakota

Rapid City gets ready to cut down on the deer population December 8, 2020 South Dakota

SD mule-deer numbers haven't really returned October 6, 2020 South Dakota

........2019

Commission adopts plan to manage SD mountain lions October 6, 2019 South Dakota

GFP Commission Proposes a Compromised Approach to the Deer Drawing Structure January 11, 2019 South Dakota

GFP Commission Unanimously Passes Deer License Allocation Proposal March 1, 2019 South Dakota

Public Asked to Report Dead Deer April 18, 2019 South Dakota

.......2018

2018 South Dakota big game populations September 17, 2018

Deer farmers raise unusual livestock in Brown County April 18, 2018 South Dakota,

GFP Commission Modifies Deer Proposal December 7, 2018 South Dakota,

GFP Commission Seeks Input on Options to Antlerless Hunting Season Dates March 8, 2018 South Dakota

Population data from 2017 Deer Management Plan, South Dakota

......2017

A few tweaks for SD deer management May 2, 2017 South Dakota

Deer population growing too slow, wildlife managers say May 10, 2017 South Dakota

Drone Usage While Hunting November 16, 2017 South Dakota

Drought weighing on minds of South Dakota pheasant biologists July 12, 2017 South Dakota,

Fewer deer hunting licenses likely for next two seasons May 7, 2017 South Dakota

GFP exploring options to improve deer hunting license system December 21, 2017 South Dakota

South Dakota 2017 Elk Season Finalized April 7, 2017

South Dakota Proposed 2017 and 2018 deer regulations

South Dakota’s Deer Management Plan Available for Review until May 5 April 13, 2017

.....2016

Archery Deer Season Allows for More Antlerless Deer Harvest June 6, 2016 South Dakota

Capturing, collaring deer helps GF&P collect needed data January 28, 2016 South Dakota,

Deer herds rebounding, more tags available June 9, 2016 South Dakota,

Deer Hunting Rules Reminder September 22, 2016 South Dakota

GFP Removes Left-over Licenses and Offers Refunds Due to Deer Disease October 14, 2016 South Dakota

South Dakota spends $238,434 to curb deer depredation in 2015 Febraury 3, 2016

South Dakota's Deer Population is on the Rise May 13, 2016

....2015

2015 Trophy Deer Forecast: Great Plains October 21, 2015 South Dakota

Antler auction brings out businessmen May 3, 2015 South Dakota

Big Game and Baiting September 24, 2015 South Dakota

Deer hunters get added chance at licenses June 4, 2015 South Dakota,

Disease Influencing Deer Numbers in Sully County November 16, 2015 South Dakota

Draft Elk Management Plan Remains Open for Final Review March 10, 2015 South Dakota

East River deer season opens Saturday November 19, 2015 South Dakota

Elk and Mountain Goat Seasons Set April 2, 2015 South Dakota

Elk Season Meeting March 24, 2015 South Dakota

For better or worse, technology has changed deer hunting October 13, 2015 South Dakota

GFP Commission Proposes Elk Seasons March 6, 2015 South Dakota

GFP Commission Proposes More Black Hills Deer Hunting Licenses May 11, 2015 South Dakota

GFP eliminates post-Christmas hunt for antlerless deer in west June 6, 2015 South Dakota

More Black Hills Deer Hunting Licenses Available in 2015 June 5, 2015 South Dakota

On The Rebound March 29, 2015 South Dakota,

Registration open for 'last resort' for depredation December 3, 2015 South Dakota,

SDSU researches which cover crops are likely to attract deer February 13, 2015 South Dakota

South Dakota Moves to a Multi-Year Schedule for Setting Hunting Seasons January 5, 2015

We’re letting another predator go down June 22, 2015 New Mexico,

Whitetail deer study taking place in Brown County February 27, 2015 South Dakota,

...2014

2014 Antelope and Early Fall Goose Hunting Seasons Finalized July 10, 2014 South Dakota

2014 Deer Hunting Seasons Finalized June 17, 2014 South Dakota

2014 Hunting Applications Available June 27, 2014 South Dakota

Bad weather, habitat loss hard on deer, pheasants March 29, 2014 South Dakota

Bowhunters seeking earlier deer season March 7, 2014 South Dakota

Butte County, Deer numbers down, but not long-term danger July 16, 2014 South Dakota

Commission expects drop in South Dakota deer tags April 29, 2014

Counting deer: SD Biologists taking new look at fawn survival July 8, 2014 South Dakota

Deer hunters show little interest in licensing changes December 14, 2014 South Dakota

Deer license cuts in South Dakota slice revenue July 9, 2014

Deer-mortality study enters second year May 9, 2014 South Dakota,

Depredation hunts may be coming up November 28, 2014 South Dakota

East River deer season starts Saturday November 21, 2014 South Dakota,

Elk Application Fees Under Review September 28, 2014

GF&P responds to deer crisis May 8, 2014 South Dakota

GFP Commission Proposes South Dakota Deer Hunting Seasons, Harvest Data May 15, 214

GFP Commission proposes state’s deer hunting seasons May 20, 2014 South Dakota,

GFP Commission to finalize deer hunting May 28, 2014 South Dakota

GFP might reconsider deer license distribution June 5, 2014 South Dakota

GFP wants to rebuild deer herds by allowing hunters fewer does April 30, 2014 South Dakota

Helicopter helps with doe and fawn survival study March 24, 2014 South Dakota

Help GF&P find deer solution July 16, 2014 South Dakota

Mountain lion hunt becoming big business in South Dakota January 30, 2014

Movement patterns, survival, and sightability of mule deer in central and western South Dakota [PDF] KA Robling, SL Griffin, S Stolz, SD Pierre - 2014

Nonrefundable Big Game Application Fee Increase and Bait Station Rules Adopted November 6, 2014 South Dakota

Number Of Deer Hunting Licenses Could Be Reduced April 24, 2014 South Dakota,

Six simple steps to promote your local deer herd January 16, 2014 South Dakota

South Dakota To Cut Number Of Deer Tags May 16, 2014

South Dakota wildlife management taking new tack after outside review April 7, 2014

State feels pocketbook pinch from reducing deer permits July 10, 2014 South Dakota,

State proposes huge reductions in antlerless-only deer licenses May 2, 2014 South Dakota

Survey underway on changes to SD deer licensing October 9, 2014 South Dakota,

This time, antelope permits may fall June 11, 2014 South Dakota

West River deer permits could be cut drastically in 2015 June 5, 2014 South Dakota

White-tailed deer survival study April 3, 2014 South Dakota

Whitetails Unlimited helps with area studies February 7, 2014 South Dakota

..2013

Black Hills Elk Herd Survey April 20, 2013 South Dakota

Deer draw (rude) awakening, population decline August 4, 2013 South Dakota,

Deer Tag Numbers To Drop? May 14, 2013 South Dakota

G&F Forecast: Best Bets for Great Plains Deer Hunting in 2013 October, 2013 South Dakota

GF&P seeks smaller deer harvests May 3, 2013 South Dakota

Harsh winters and drought have reduced the deer herd but help may be on the way November 14, 2013 South Dakota

Hunters Reminded About Prohibitions Against Use of Salt and Bait Stations October 1, 2013

Hunting/Fishing License Fee Changes Proposed October 9, 2013 South Dakota

Listening session jabs state on elk, mountain lion management May 16, 2013 South Dakota

Public may feel left out of SD big game management May 15, 2013 South Dakota

SD big game policy group to hold 3 public meetings May 13, 2013 South Dakota,

South Dakota in midst of exciting deer management experiment December 5, 2013

South Dakota Mountain Lion Season Proposed August 9, 2013 South Dakota

State wildlife officials respond to big-game management review November 7, 2013 South Dakota

Survey Shows 67 percent Success Rate for Black Hills Deer Season February 14, 2013 South Dakota

The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission held its October meeting in Spearfish last week. October 17, 2013

Wildlife damage bill defeated February 18, 2013 South Dakota

.2012

Deer hunting changes possible for East River June 8, 2012 South Dakota

Deer Licenses Reduced, Refunds Offered Due To Die-Offs December, 2012 South Dakota

Extended Antlerless Deer Season Begins Saturday December 24, 2012 South Dakota

Fawns use 'escape plan' to evade predators May 16, 2012 South Dakot

GF&P elk-season meeting expected to draw a crowd March 28, 2012 South Dakota

GF&P review should restore trust July 21, 2012 South Dakota

GF&P sides with science, mountain lion management October 9, 2012 South Dakota

GF&P using good data on lions March 9, 2012 South Dakota

Governor's office seeks independent review of GF&P July 6, 2012 South Dakota

Governor's office takes on direct role in hunt management October 12, 2012

Hunters say GF&P plan to increase lion kill comes after big-game damages done August 8, 2012 South Dakota

Hunters take aim at 100-lion quota as season begins in beneficial fresh snow December 26, 2012 South Dakota

Hunters, sportsmen blast GF&P over elk, lion management March 30, 2012 South Dakota

NDGF explores deaths of doe and her quadruplet fawns June 10, 2012 South Dakota

Past winters still taking toll on deer population May 4, 2012 South Dakota

Predator evasion by white-tailed deer fawns May 22, 2012, South Dakota

Prescribed Burning Manages Habitat The Way Mother Nature Intended October 25, 2012 South Dakota

Public to help set scope of state wildlife agency review July 9, 2012 South Dakota

SD man sentenced to a year in prison and $11750 restitution for illegally shooting wildlife (including deer) November 30, 2012 South Dakota

SD panel proposes boost in mountain lion hunting August 3, 2012 South Dakota

South Dakota Black Hills Deer & Firearms Antelope Harvest Report January 20, 2012

South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks Takes to the Air to Monitor Deer Populations [link opens a PDF file] July 3, 2012

South Dakota hunters might trade less deer for more geese‎ July 11, 2012

Study: Cougars again spreading across Midwest June 14, 2012 South Dakota

Thousands of deer licenses returned December 8, 2012 South Dakota

2011

Biologists recommend hunters kill more mountain lions in Black Hills August 5, 2011 South Dakota

Black Hills: GF&P experiments with deer season: Limited-access public hunting areas June 3, 2011

Deer harvest declines in South Dakota August 3, 2011

Evaluating the effect of predators on white‐tailed deer: Movement, not coyotes June 7, 2011 South Dakota

GFP cutting back on deer tags October 13, 2011 South Dakota

GFP sets East River deer season at levels similar to the 2010 hunt July 8, 2011 South Dakota

Hunters worry about lions' impact in Hills October 30, 2011 South Dakota

Lions Not the Problem - South Dakota Hunting October 8, 2011

Proposal to let hunters kill more SD mountain lions creates disagreement August 9, 2011 South Dakota

Public comments run strongly for killing more mountain lions October 7, 2011 South Dakota

Spatial ecology of white-tailed deer fawns in the northern Great Plains: Implications of loss of conservation reserve program grasslands December 19, 2011 South Dakota

South Dakota 1930s Deer Population