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A west impact

North Dakota Game and Fish Courtesy Photo With deer at its lowest number of licenses since 1988, there are many factors going into establishing a rising population. Oil activity, disease and three harsh winters resulted in 65,300 licenses available this season.

In the wild, deer have many competitors whether it's other predators, disease, or in the western North Dakota's case, oil activity.

Being license numbers down to 65,300, which is a decrease of 44,650 from last year, hunters should still be excited for deer season.

"Hunters are always excited about deer gun season in North Dakota," said Jeb Williams, North Dakota Game and Fish Department assistant wildlife chief. "There's no doubt the number of deer and the number of licenses this year are quite a bit lower than what hunters have been used to in the last several years."

The deer gun season opens on Friday and it's not only a time to go hunting, but a time to spend with friends and family.

"It's a great bonding experience to get out there with your friends and family," said Nick Weir, who is a graduate of Dickinson Trinity and currently a freshman at the University of North Dakota. "It's something irreplaceable."

With the western side of the state, hunters have the opportunity for whitetail and mule deer.