ELDRIDGE, Iowa (KWQC) – Many farmers in the Quad Cities area are back in their fields for harvest and for some, they’re returning a bit earlier than usual. Area farmers say hot weather conditions this summer are to thank for that.
“We went from everything looking fairly green to all of a sudden it’s like, oh boy I hope I have everything ready so I can get started with harvest,” Hans Schnekloth, a farmer from Eldridge, said.
Hans farms with his father, John Schnekloth, and the two say it’s looking to be a good year for them.
“This is by far the biggest and best crop that I’ve ever seen in my entire career,” John Schnekloth said.
Now through November, farmers, like the Schnekloths will be out, putting in long days to get their crops harvested.
With combines, tractors and semis out and about, they say those machines aren’t the only things moving through their fields.
“A whole lot more deer, you know, you’ll see where deer have been laying around, we see deer all the time,” John Schnekloth said.
“We do scare them out of the fields this time of the year, so especially during the late afternoon, evening time,” Hans added.
Iowa Department of Natural Resources State Conservation Officer Jeff Harrison says this time of the year, it’s important to watch out for all types of wildlife running out onto roadways, especially deer.
“A lot of times the rate of car-deer accidents are increased, usually start harvest time and then it gets even more so because the deer begin to mate so then it creates the rut and that’s when you have more car deer accidents up through November and beginning of December,” Harrison said.
Harrison says rut, or deer mating season starts in October and runs through December and also increases the risks of deer accidents on the roadway.
He says drivers need to slow down and watch out for moving farm machinery and the animals that are trying to relocate so people and those animals make it home safe.
“If you do see them taking a corn field or a bean field out or something along those lines and you see one deer, chances are there’s going to be more behind it so use extreme caution with that,” Harrison said.
Harrison urges drivers to also be cautious at intersections with standing corn that can affect visibility, and to keep a safe distance from slow-moving farm equipment.