A two-year-old male is the latest lion killed in the mountain lion hunting season. The big cat was killed in Custer County on Tuesday. It's the 52nd lion of the season. Thirty-one females have been killed since the start at the end of December.
Last year on this date, hunters had killed 62 total lions and 33 females.
The season comes to a close on Monday, and this year's numbers will fall well below the 75 lion limit. So, does that mean changes next season?
South Dakota Game Fish and Parks Regional Supervisor, Mike Kintigh says it's too early to say.
The mountain lion population goal is 150-200 statewide.
Kintigh says the population estimate has been well above that level in recent years, which is why the quota has been so high.
But, he says this year was a tricky one so predicting changes to the quota is hard at this point.
"We ran into some difficulties this year starting December 26th because last year's tags were valid for the whole calendar year so we had some overlap," said Kintigh.
In August, Kintigh and his staff will make a recommendation to the SD Game Fish and Parks Commission. A quota will be finalized in October.