From Illinois Department of Natural Resources
-- Hunters in Illinois harvested a preliminary total of 71,894 deer during the opening weekend of the 2008 Illinois Firearm Deer season, Nov. 21-23, Illinois Department of Natural Resources Acting Director Sam Flood announced today.
The second portion of the firearm season will be Dec. 4-7.
The top county harvest total was in Pike with 2,194 deer, followed by Adams (1,900), Fulton (1,878), Randolph (1,770), and Jefferson (1,650). 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.
The first weekend harvest for 2007 totaled 85,490 deer.
Illinois has issued approximately 350,000 firearm deer hunting permits for the 2008 season. Most hunters register their deer harvest online through the IDNR website or by phoning 1-866-ILCHECK (1-866-452-4325) by 10 p.m. on the day of harvest. Hunters in Boone, DeKalb, Grundy, Kane, LaSalle, McHenry, Ogle, Stephenson and Winnebago counties take their deer to county check stations where IDNR conducts sampling for chronic wasting disease.
Approximately 59 percent of the deer taken this past weekend were bucks, compared with 62 percent bucks taken during the first weekend of the firearm season in 2007.
The Illinois firearm deer season concludes Dec. 4-7. The muzzleloader-only deer season is Dec. 12-14. The Late-Winter Antlerless-only firearm deer season and the Special CWD deer season are Jan. 16-18, 2009.
The state's 2008-09 archery deer season continues through Jan. 15 (except closed in firearm counties during the second firearm season Dec. 4-7).