Deer Hunting Seasons Conclude with Hunters in Illinois Taking Preliminary Total of 162,575 Deer

Rachel Torbert
Deer Hunting Seasons Conclude with Hunters in Illinois Taking Preliminary Total of 162,575 Deer
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Hunters in Illinois harvested a preliminary total of 162,575 deer during all 2020-21 archery and firearm seasons, which concluded Jan. 17, 2021. The total preliminary deer harvest for all seasons compares with a total harvest for all seasons of 153,174 deer in 2019-20. 

During the 2020-21 deer seasons, hunters took 45.4 percent does and 54.6 percent males. 

Archery:  Archery deer hunters in Illinois took a preliminary total of 75,544 deer (new record) during the season which began on Oct. 1, 2020 and concluded on Jan. 17, 2021.  The total archery harvest during the 2019-20 season was 67,743 deer.

Youth:  Youth deer hunters harvested a preliminary total of 2,321 deer during the three-day Illinois Youth Deer Season (Oct. 10-12, 2020), compared to 3,774 in 2019.

Traditional Firearm Season:  Hunters took a preliminary total of 76,579 deer during the Illinois Firearm Deer Season on Nov. 20-22, 2020 and Dec. 3-6, 2020, compared with 75,417 deer taken during the 2019 firearm season.

Muzzleloader:  Hunters using muzzleloading rifles harvested a preliminary total of 3,447 deer during the Muzzleloader-Only Deer Season on Dec. 11-13, 2020, compared with harvest of 3,076 deer in the 2019 muzzleloader season.

Late-Winter Seasons:  The 2020-21 Late-Winter Antlerless-Only and Special CWD deer seasons concluded on Jan. 17, 2021 with a combined preliminary harvest total for both seasons of 4,684 deer, compared with a harvest of 3,164 deer taken during those seasons in 2019-20. Season dates for the seven-day Late-Winter and CWD seasons were Dec. 31, 2020-Jan. 3, 2021 and Jan. 15-17, 2021. 
There were 15 northern Illinois counties open to the Special CWD Season, which is used to assist in slowing the spread of chronic wasting disease in the Illinois deer herd.

There were 20 counties open for the Late-Winter Antlerless Season in 2020-21.  Counties that are at or below their individual deer population goal for two consecutive years may be removed from the Late-Winter season.

For more information on Illinois deer harvest in recent years (prior to 2020-21), check the IDNR website at

Tables available at the link below provide a county-by-county summary of preliminary deer harvest results for 2020-21, and final 2019-20 harvest results for comparison.

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