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Muscatine allowing deer bow hunting on two city property sites this season

Four hunters were chosen to hunt at McKee Park on a parcel of land owned by the city adjacent to the Hershey Avenue and Houser Street intersection.

MUSCATINE, Iowa — The deer bow hunting season will once again be held in Muscatine within city limits on approved private property, but this year, some hunters will be able to hunt on two city-owned property sites.

The season will begin on Sept. 17 and mark the 15th year that Muscatine has participated in the Iowa Department of Natural Resource's Deer Management Zone Program. Since the 2006-07 season, 758 deer have been harvested as part of an effort to keep the local deer population at a controllable and safe number.

"We also keep track of the vehicle accidents involving deer in the city limits of Muscatine," said Nick Gow, the superintendent of parks. "As we've seen more deer taken, we've also seen fewer accidents, so we've seen a decline in accidents over the last several years."

In those years, the city had been allowing bow hunting on approved private property with two or more acres. This season, the city is opening up McKee Park and a parcel of land owned by the city adjacent to the Hershey Avenue and Houser Street intersection to select archers.

Four hunters were chosen from a raffle to be able to hunt on those two properties for the season, two on each.

"We did see an increase of population of deer in those two areas," Gow said. "I've had several people sign up for (the informational meeting), hunters wanting to come out and participate in the city-wide deer hunt, but not having parcels of land to hunt. So we saw this as an opportunity to, again, not a recreation program, but more of a maintenance-based program to help control deer in the area."

The areas were identified by the Muscatine City Council, making sure to avoid any active parks. Hunters will be required to follow all DNR regulations and guidelines, as they would on private property within city limits.

"We want to see how things work with the potential of expanding in the future to other public property sites," Gow said.

Around three dozen people are signed up for the city-wide deer hunting season in Muscatine.

The season begins Sept. 17 and will end on Jan. 10, 2023.

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