The January antlerless deer season begins Jan. 11, for 42 counties, mainly in southern Iowa, and is the final deer season of the year. Even though there may be licenses left for a county not all areas in these counties need to have extra does taken. Hunters are encouraged to work with landowners to determine desired local deer population level and adjust their doe harvest accordingly.
Hunters are reminded that they will need to have a 2012 hunting license and habitat fee to participate in the season. The January antlerless season allows hunters to use shotguns, muzzleloaders, handguns and bows. In the southern two tiers of counties, hunters may also choose a centerfire rifle, .24 caliber or larger. Hunting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset. Party hunting is allowed during the January antlerless season. The season ends Jan. 29.One concern voiced by hunters is that bucks that have shed their antlers are taken during this season. Hunters can avoid harvesting a shed antlered buck by passing up a shot at a lone deer and wait for does and fawns traveling together.Hunters can use the HUSH program
to donate any legally harvested deer to the Food Bank of Iowa, where the meat will help Iowans in need.
All deer taken must be reported using the harvest reporting system by midnight the day after the deer is recovered. Accurately reporting the harvest is an important part of Iowa’s deer management program and plays a vital role in managing deer populations and future hunting opportunities.
For hunters with Internet access, the online harvest reporting is the easiest way to register the deer. Hunters can report their deer online at www.iowadnr.gov, by calling the toll free reporting number 1-800-771-4692, or at any license vendor.