Good News for Iowa’s Pheasant Hunters
The Iowa DNR has released the results of the 2021 roadside pheasant population survey. Overall, it found Iowa’s statewide pheasant population to be around 20 birds per 30-mile route.
Pheasant hunters in Iowa harvested nearly 300,000 roosters during the 2020 season, which was the second-highest number reported in more than a decade, and with this year’s pheasant count, this year’s harvest could be even higher. The estimated statewide population is four to six million birds.
The ring-necked pheasant was successfully introduced into North America in 1881 and into Iowa around the year 1900. According to the Iowa DNR, Iowa’s first ring-necked pheasants were introduced accidentally when a windstorm wrecked the pens of a game breeder in Cedar Falls releasing approximately 2,000 birds.
If you think they fly fast, you’re right. The average pheasant can fly at a speed of 27 to 38 miles per hour – unless it’s being chased, then it has been clocked as fast as 60 miles per hour.
Youth pheasant season is Oct. 23-24
- Pheasant season is Oct. 30-Jan. 10, 2022
The Iowa DNR’s online hunting atlas lists nearly 700,000 acres of public hunting land, including 22,000 acres of land enrolled in the popular Iowa Habitat and Access Program (IHAP) allowing hunter access to private land.
Each area on the atlas includes a link to a map with property boundaries, the size of the area, habitat type, species of wildlife likely found, and more. The map is available as a downloadable pdf that can be printed or saved to a smartphone.
To view the atlas, go to www.iowadnr.gov/hunting and click on Places to Hunt and Shoot in the left column.
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