ROCK FALLS -- Preliminary figures show the number of deer hunted in Illinois is down this year.
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Citing preliminary Illinois Department of Natural Resources figures, Sauk Valley Media reports fewer deer were hunted during the seven-day firearm season which took place in November and December.
Last year, 99,546 deer were hunted compared with 74,191 this year.
Sauk Valley Media reports the trend echoed in each county where deer hunting is allowed, except for Alexander County. That county saw a small increase.
Officials say part of the reason for the drop was the dip in temperatures during the second part of the season. That's when temperatures fell to the single digits.
Ed Branch works at Rigler's Shooting and Sports Supply in Rock Falls. He says the numbers reflect what customers have been saying.