Deer numbers look good for most areas in the Jamestown area although disease has been a problem south and west of the area, according to Jason Smith, big game biologist with the North Dakota Game and Fish Department in Jamestown.

"The deer population is good," he said. "The majority of the EHD (epizootic hemorrhagic disease) has been limited to the southwest and central North Dakota."

North Dakota Game and Fish Department has offered refunds to hunters with licenses in several units across the state including 2I and 2H in the Jamestown area.

Unit 2I is defined by Interstate 94 on the north and U.S. Highway 281 on the east. Unit 2H is defined by U.S. Highway 13 on the north and U.S. Highway 281 on the east.

Bill Jensen, a big big game biologist in Bismarck, said there are some cases of EHD every year usually limited to areas south and west of the Missouri River.

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"This year the west area is showing some immunity," he said. "This year it started along the Missouri River and spread."

Jensen said EHD is a viral disease spread by tiny midges. The insects, sometimes called "no-see-ums" breed in the mud of drying sloughs that were common this year during the drought.

"We had good breeding grounds for the midge and a deer population without any immunity," he said. "From that, you get a die off."

Jensen said the number of deaths varied greatly even within a small area. There are no estimate as to the number of deer lost to the disease.

"We usually don't get much feedback on loss of deer until the pheasant hunting season," he said.

Regular pheasant hunting season opened Oct. 9.

Reports of EHD to Game and Fish officials in Jamestown have been light, Smith said.

"A few cases around here but not a lot," he said. "A couple of landowners reported sick deer."

Smith said overall, the deer numbers in the Stutsman County area should be good going into the hunting season.

"We had a mild winter so the deer came into spring in good condition," he said.