Minn. firearms deer harvest down from 2012 so far - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Minn. firearms deer harvest down from 2012 so far

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- Windy weather and standing corn put a lid on the opening of Minnesota's firearms deer season.

The Department of Natural Resources says the harvest for the first three days was down 8 percent from 2012. Hunters registered just over 77,000 deer from Saturday through Monday.

Big game program leader Leslie McInenly says it's not surprising. Last year's opening weekend weather was almost ideal and the corn harvest was nearly complete. But she says Saturday was marked by winds up to 30 mph and more hiding places in pockets of unharvested corn.

The deer harvest was down 19 percent in the northeast, 4 percent in the southeast and 6 percent for the rest of Minnesota.

The DNR still expects a final tally similar to 2012 when hunters killed about 185,000 deer.

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