- Associated Press - Friday, November 6, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Tens of thousands of people in orange will be dotting the North Dakota countryside starting this afternoon, as North Dakota’s deer gun season gets underway at noon.

The 43,275 deer gun licenses that were made available for this fall’s hunt is the lowest amount in nearly 40 years, due to declining habitat and some recent tough winters.

Hunting of mule deer does in the western Badlands also is not being allowed for the fourth straight season, to help the population recover.

But Game and Fish Wildlife Chief Jeb Williams says with another mild winter, that restriction could be lifted next year.

Game and Fish officials hope that with another mild winter they also will be able to start increasing total deer licenses again.

This year’s season runs through Nov. 22.

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