Be cautious - It's deer collision season - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Be cautious - It's deer collision season

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) -

Deer mating season will soon be in full swing, which means the chances of you running into a deer are rising as well.

The Iowa DNR said the chances of you hitting a deer this year are actually lower than previous years.

Department of Natural Resources spokesman Joe Wilkinson said recent statistics indicators tracked by the DNR show an increase deer hits preceding 2006, when the DNR committed to reducing the size of the herd by applying more hunter pressure on does.

The population has declined in the years since.

The number of deer harvest, for example, has decreased to 34 percent from 2006 through 2013, compared to an increase of 113 percent from 1995 to 2005.

In a State Farm annual report on vehicle-deer claims released on Sept. 15 states Iowa drivers are 5.5% less likely to hit a deer in the coming year, than they were last year.

Iowa also dropped on the list of high incidents states from third to fourth this year.

The DNR officers offer this advice to avoid a deer collision

- Stay Alert, wear a seat belt and drive a sensible speed for conditions.

- Watch for the reflections of eyes and deer silhouettes on the shoulder of roads

- At night, use high-beam headlights when there's no oncoming traffic to illuminate the eyes of deer on the road.

- If a deer enters or approaches your path, brake firmly and stay in your lane.

- Remain alert near potential deer crossings

- Slow down during dawn and dusk hours, high deer travel periods

If you hit a deer, officials with the DNR encourage you to contact the authorities.

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