Iowa Hunters Provide Valuable Patrol In Rural Areas

By Mark Carlson, Reporter

Donnie Kasat, left, and Mike Wagner of Eau Claire, Wis. walk along a trial in the Clark County forest near Fairchild, Wis. while hunting on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012 during the Wisconsin deer gun season opener. (AP Photo/Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, Shane Opatz)

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By KCRG Intern

BENTON COUNTY, Iowa - Just days after hunters discovered the bodies of two missing Iowa cousins in Bremer County, thousands of hunters continue to march Iowa's fields. The hunters provide valuable foot patrols, in areas not often walked by the general public.

"(Hunters) are walking a lot of the timber areas, a lot of the farm fields," said Pat Jorgensen, a DNR conservation officer in Iowa's northeast district. "They do come across things the average person might not, because they're covering a lot more ground than anyone else during the hunting season."

Around 120 thousand hunters will take part in one of Iowa's two annual shotgun deer hunting seasons, which wrap up this weekend.

"Sometimes we walk swampy areas, sometimes thick brush," said Tom Hootmen, who hunts in Johnson County. Wide ranging discoveries are typical during the hunting season, Hootmen said.

"We've had hunters find cars in the river," said Jorgensen. "Our hunters come across things such as marijuana grows and meth labs."

On Monday the Iowa State Medical Examiner's Office confirmed that the two bodies discovered by hunters last Wednesday are those of Lyric Cook-Morrissey and Elizabeth Collins. The girls had been missing since July.

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