South Dakota Antelope Season 3rd Highest on Record
The 2007 pronghorn antelope harvest in South Dakota is the highest since 1984, and is the third highest on record.
According to harvest surveys compiled by the S.D. Game, Fish and Parks Department, last year was the highest recorded antelope harvest in the state since the 1984 season and the fifth straight year that the antelope harvest has increased.
GFP Game Harvest Survey Coordinator Corey Huxoll said that estimates indicate approximately 13,700 antelope were harvested during the 2007 hunting seasons. That is an increase of more than 2,000 antelope from 2006 and an increase of more than 12,000 antelope just after the severe winter of 1996-1997.
"We have harvest records back to 1941, when only about 500 antelope were harvested," Huxoll said."The highest harvest on record was 17,000 in 1984."
Overall harvest success remained high at 62 percent despite a 24 percent increase in the number of tags issued from just under 20,000 in 2006 to more than 24,000 in 2007. Survey results indicate that there was a 16 percent increase in buck harvest and a 17 percent increase in doe harvest from 2006.
"It is only through the cooperation of hunters completing harvest report cards that we are able to assess the success of the antelope harvest," Huxoll noted. "Unlike some states South Dakota does not have mandatory check stations which require hunters to travel upwards of 20 to 30 miles or more only to wait in line to have someone visually document their harvest."
The 2007 Firearm Antelope Harvest Report is complete and can be accessed through the GFP Web site at www.sdgfp.info in the "What's New" section, or can be requested by mail or in person in printed form from the Pierre office at 523 E. Capitol Avenue.