Iowa Pheasant Season Opener This Weekend

Hunter Aiming Pheasant Flying Over Grassy Field Against Sky

Photo: Jeanine Gibeaut / EyeEm / EyeEm / Getty Images

(Undated) -- Iowa's early harvest could lead to a successful start to the pheasant season, according to Todd Bogunschutz, Iowa Department of Natural Resources biologist. He says pheasants should be easier to spot now that much of the corn has been harvested.

"We expect between 50,000 and 60,000 pheasant hunters this season, and a lot them will be out this weekend," said Bogunschutz.

Bogunschutz says the expected cooler temperatures will also be a plus, noting dogs tend to favor cooler temperatures during hunting season.

The DNR says based on the August roadside survey, Iowa hunters can expect to harvest 300,000 to 400,000 roosters this year, which is similar to the past two years, when the harvest was the highest in more than a decade.

Bogunschutz also notes portions of Iowa impacted by the drought were opened to haying CRP and it would be advised for hunters to scout the area they plan to hunt prior to the season.

Quail season also opens this weekend and fall covey counts indicate the population could be a little better than last year. Quail hunting is primarily across the southern two tiers of counties.

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