2022 Minnesota Firearms Deer Opener begins Saturday

It will be a big weekend in the hunting community as Minnesota’s firearm deer season opens up, starting tomorrow morning.
Published: Nov. 4, 2022 at 1:24 PM CDT
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MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - It will be a big weekend in the hunting community as Minnesota’s firearm deer season opens up starting Saturday morning.

Almost a half-million Minnesotans will be waking up with the birds.

According to Minnesota DNR numbers, deer harvest was down last year more than six percent from 2020, missing the agency’s goal of 200,000 deer by about 14,000.

For hunters in our region, experts are saying the outlook is good.

“Deer populations in Southwestern Minnesota are typically stable to increasing in this part of the state,” explained Barb Keller, the Big Game Program Leader for the Minnesota DNR. “We also know that the crop harvest is on schedule which does bode well for hunter success rate.”

The DNR is also continuing to keep an eye on Chronic Wasting Disease, which isn’t harmful to humans at this point but can potentially devastate deer populations in the state.

“For the most part it is relatively rare but we like to keep it that way. We’ve instituted a couple of management regulations, including carcass removal restrictions to prevent people from moving the disease even farther across the state,” said Kelsey Lasharr, a Research Biologist for the Minnesota DNR. “It’s really important that we get our deer tested so that we can keep an eye on the disease a whole.”

The DNR recommends checking your regulations book for more information on CWD testing.