City plans to continue urban deer hunt

This season’s urban deer hunting was successful.

Terry Gray, Parks and Recreation director, said the program has completed its fourth year, and hunters removed between 15 and 20 doe from the Marshalltown area, mostly in the area north of the gun range at Riverview Park and on the Apgar property.

Gray spoke to the Marshalltown City Council at its Monday night Committee of the Whole meeting.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) listed 15 doe having been killed during the season, which runs from September until January. The city’s records list 20 doe. Gray said she is unsure how the disparity arose.

Twenty bow hunters purchased 44 of the 100 available licenses, and eight of the 20 reported killing a doe.

“Those eight did the yeoman’s job,” Gray said.

Two hunters qualified and obtained the buck license but did not kill a buck. In order to qualify to get a buck license, a hunter must have already killed three doe.

The county perimeter also has special licenses; 21 of those licenses were issued, and hunters killed eight doe and two button bucks in those areas.

Gray said the city plans to continue with the program. An aerial survey showed that the deer population is up from two years ago but still down from four years ago prior to the program’s start.

“A lot of things play into the deer numbers, and our hunting program is just one piece of the pie,” Gray said. “We know it has had an impact. It has suppressed the deer population in an around Marshalltown to a certain degree.”

The urban deer hunting program begins on the third Saturday in September and runs through the end of January.

A commission associated with the DNR has asked the city to submit a letter of intent to the DNR, Gray said. She said she is unsure what the letter aims to accomplish, but the deadline for it is May 31.

Mayor Tommy Thompson said the program is a good one.

Joel Greer, second ward council member, was absent.