Sara Story, Denton Journalist
Hunters fear hot temperatures, drought and wildfires may have changed the habitats of deer.
Editor's Note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that deer hunting season begins Nov. 1. Deer hunting season begins Nov. 5 in North Texas. NBC 5 regrets the error.
Hunters are gearing up for deer hunting season, but some say they are worried that Mother Nature has affected the quality of deer this year.
Luis Tapia said he will head to West Texas to hunt for white-tail deer. But he said he is not sure what he will find this year.
"Having very warm seasons, drought conditions, the fires that we have seen in West Texas -- these are things that are effecting the ecosystems that the animals live in, so hunting opportunities aren't what they used to be," he said.
Dennis Smith, owner of Dennis's Farm Store in Denton, said he is afraid deer will be in bad shape because of the lack of food, unless they've been eating out of feeders.
"People that are putting out protein and stuff -- those deer are looking good," he said.
However, he said the practice gets pricey because the cost of feed is going up.
"That gets into the pocketbook," Smith said. "You could buy beef for what you pay in feed just to kill a deer."
But it isn't hindering hunters such as Tapia.
"I have been planning this season's hunting trip since the end of last season," he said. "Even though hunting season starts next weekend, I first started packing two months ago."
He said he is willing to search hard for this year's trophy.
"It just means they might have to look a few more spots -- move down the road or keep looking," Tapia said.
Deer hunting season begins Nov. 5.