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A deer looks for food at George Wyth State Park last month in Waterloo.

DES MOINES | The final stretch for hunters to pursue Iowa’s world class deer began Monday with the start of the late muzzleloader season and the re-opening of the popular archery season. Both seasons close Jan. 10.

Hunters with a late muzzleloader license may use a bow, muzzleloader, handgun and Iowa residents may also use a crossbow. Hunters may not use a shotgun or centerfire rifles during late muzzleloader season and party hunting is not allowed.

Hunters have reported harvesting nearly 92,000 deer so far this year, which is similar to the harvest last year. Hunters who harvest a deer are reminded to report the harvest to the DNR by midnight on the day after it is tagged or before taking it to a locker or taxidermist, or before transporting it out-of-state, whichever comes first.

Nonresidents may participate in the antlerless-deer only holiday season Dec. 24-Jan. 2, in counties where the nonresident antlerless deer quota has not been filled.

Hunters who do not have a nonresident deer license may purchase an optional antlerless-only license for the holiday season. Licenses may be purchased over the counter through any license agent. Holiday deer licenses will not be sold online or through the telephone ordering system.

Nonresident hunters purchased 110 holiday antlerless licenses last year.


BOAT REGISTRATION: 2016 is a boat registration year and Iowans will be registering about 235,000 boats between Jan. 1 and April 30.

Boat registrations are handled by Iowa’s county recorders. Boat owners should bring their current registration to recorder’s office in the county where the individual resides when they renew.

Nonresidents who register their boat in Iowa will go to the county where the boat is primarily used.

Owners who purchased a boat from a private seller and are registering it in their name should bring the signed registration and make sure the title is signed over to them, if applicable.

Boat registrations are good for three years. The fees go to support water trails, navigation enforcement, aquatic invasive species, boater education and safety, and the registration system.

LICENSES ON SALE: It's time to renew Iowa hunting and fishing licenses, most of which expire Jan. 10.

The menu of license options includes the popular Outdoor Combo annual resident hunting/fishing/habitat combo license for $47; the Angler’s Special three-year fishing license for $53; and the Hunter’s Special three-year hunting license with habitat included for $86.

Also available is the Bonus Line option for $12 allowing resident and nonresident anglers to fish with one additional line in addition to the two lines allowed with the regular fishing license.

Iowa hunting and fishing license fees remain unchanged for 2016.

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