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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 20, 2007

Hunters in Illinois harvest more than 85,000 deer during first weekend of firearm deer season
2007 first season preliminary totals nearly identical to last year’s first season numbers

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Hunters in Illinois harvested a preliminary total of 85,490 deer during the opening weekend of the state’s 2007 firearm deer season, Nov. 16-18, Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) Acting Director Sam Flood announced today.  The second portion of the firearm season is Nov. 29-Dec. 2.

The preliminary total for the first three days of the 2007 firearm season compares with the first weekend harvest of 85,452 during the 2006 deer season.  The preliminary first-season figures reported for each county include those deer taken on special hunt areas within that county as well as on private land.

“With great weather throughout Illinois and a dedicated group of hunters, it appears the first season in 2007 was a success,” said Flood.  “We thank those hunters who participated in the first segment of the firearm deer season and wish all hunters a safe and successful time in the field when the season concludes Nov. 29 through Dec. 2.”

Illinois has issued more than 378,000 firearm deer hunting permits for the 2007 season.  Most hunters register their deer harvest online through the IDNR web site or by phoning 1-866-ILCHECK (1-866-452-4325) by 10 p.m. on the day of harvest.  Hunters in Boone, DeKalb, Kane, McHenry, Ogle, Stephenson and Winnebago counties take their deer to county check stations where IDNR conducts sampling for chronic wasting disease (Kane Co. hunters check in their deer at the DeKalb Co. check station).

“Hunting conditions were excellent, with temperatures ranging from lows in the 20s and 30s to highs in the 40s in northern Illinois to 50s and 60s in southern Illinois.   Traces of rain occurred to the north on Saturday, but not significant enough to impact hunter participation, said IDNR Forest Wildlife Program Manager Paul Shelton.  “Excellent weather conditions and the fact that virtually all the corn crop has been harvested were positive factors for hunting opportunity.  Thanks to hunters for participating in the season, for registering their harvest through the online and phone systems – and a special thank you to all the hunters in the northern counties who allowed us to sample their deer as part of our CWD surveillance program,” said Shelton.

IDNR reminds all hunters in the seven northern Illinois counties participating in CWD testing that mandatory check stations will be open during the second season.  In addition, because of the discovery of CWD in LaSalle County near the Grundy County line this past summer, a new voluntary check station is open for the firearm season this year in Seneca for registering and sampling deer taken by hunters in LaSalle and Grundy Counties.  While the LaSalle/Grundy check station is not mandatory (hunters may choose to report harvest from those counties using the automated system), hunters are encouraged to bring their LaSalle/Grundy deer to this check station to allow them to be tested for CWD.

The 2007 Illinois firearm deer season concludes Nov. 29-Dec. 2.  The muzzleloader-only deer season is Dec. 7-9.  The Late-Winter Antlerless-only firearm deer season and the Special CWD deer season are Jan. 18-20, 2008.  The state’s 2007-08 archery deer season continues through Jan. 17 (except closed in firearm counties during the second firearm season Nov. 29-Dec. 2). 

The top five counties first season firearm harvest were Pike (2,610), Adams (2,140), JoDaviess (2,055), Fulton (2,003), and Jefferson (1,997)

The table below provides preliminary county harvest totals for the first segment of the 2007 firearm season and comparable figures for the first season in 2006.

County 2006 2007

Adams 2359 2140
Alexander 332 339
Bond 855 877
Boone 154 133
Brown 1330 1135
Bureau 1062 1205
Calhoun 1241 1036
Carroll 821 921
Cass 722 665
Champaign 217 272
Christian 564 574
Clark 1045 1122
Clay 1166 1177
Clinton 838 808
Coles 613 621
Crawford 947 950
Cumberland 695 693
DeKalb 207 213
DeWitt 340 320
Douglas 211 212
Edgar 558 608
Edwards 446 434
Effingham 929 923
Fayette 1627 1684
Ford 116 123
Franklin 1052 979
Fulton 1992 2003
Gallatin 491 451
Greene 1303 1209
Grundy 307 354
Hamilton 1099 1036
Hancock 1669 1698
Hardin 784 907
Henderson 602 586
Henry 649 742
Iroquois 489 548
Jackson 1838 1824
Jasper 1046 1049
Jefferson 1889 1997
Jersey 953 790
JoDaviess 1845 2055
Johnson 1445 1435
Kane 68 48
Kankakee 151 191
Kendall 75 67
Knox 1130 1244
Lake   25
LaSalle 948 1127
Lawrence 570 497
Lee 623 577
Livingston 437 498
Logan 357 401
Macon 230 252
Macoupin 1704 1677
Madison 952 995
Marion 1560 1677
Marshall 663 696
Mason 517 489
Massac 486 471
McDonough 825 902
McHenry 310 360
McLean 537 541
Menard 416 392
Mercer 758 828
Monroe 1046 910
Montgomery 1168 1149
Morgan 963 899
Moultrie 264 251
Ogle 958 1035
Peoria 1225 1317
Perry 1250 1161
Piatt 160 184
Pike 2778 2610
Pope 1745 1473
Pulaski 607 547
Putnam 422 454
Randolph 2110 1890
Richland 790 745
Rock Island 739 806
Saline 741 734
Sangamon 722 743
Schuyler 1426 1346
Scott 551 508
Shelby 1194 1193
St. Clair 923 868
Stark 300 258
Stephenson 699 837
Tazewell 619 625
Union 1523 1551
Vermilion 657 719
Wabash 281 252
Warren 587 554
Washington 1138 1083
Wayne 1398 1446
White 804 808
Whiteside 704 806
Will 289 287
Williamson 1319 1391
Winnebago 361 410
Woodford 826 837
Total 85452 85490



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