While gun hunters took 102,000 whitetails in 2002, archers bagged 51,600, setting a state record. DNR deer biologist Paul Shelton attributes the in-state popularity of bowhunting to a long and liberal season and a two-deer-per-archer limit in many areas. The largest harvests occur from the Shawnee National Forest area in southern Illinois in an arc through western and west-central counties. Contact: Department of Natural Resources (217-782-6302; www.dnr.state.il.us).
Deer Forecast 2003