DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The opening day of gun season on Monday harvested 15,501 white-tailed deer in Ohio, up nearly 2,000 from 2018, according to numbers released by the Ohio Division of Wildlife.
The higher number is the result of better weather for the first day of the gun season this year than in 2018 as well as the reflection of policies to increase the size of herds by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
“A couple of reasons, first and foremost even though a good portion of the state saw poor weather yesterday, it was better weather than last year’s opening day,” McCoy said. “Our regulations for the last several years have been to encourage moderate herd growth. I think an increased harvest would speak to having a few more deer on the landscape.”
McCoy said last year’s hunting season resulted in a low number of deer. He said the result of a low season is more deer the next season, and it has been tracking that way through late 2019.
“When you look at the archery harvest, it’s higher than last year at the same time,” McCoy said. “A lot of stars have to align to have a higher harvest – better conditions and more deer on the landscape.”
McCoy said the annual hunting season is important for managing the deer population, keeping roads safe and keeping deer from overmultiplying.
“From a biologist’s perspective hunters are the only way to regulate the deer population,” McCoy said.
The top 10 counties in the state were:
- Coschocton, 663
- Ashtabula, 601
- Tuscarawas, 557,
- Knox, 544
- Muskingum, 511
- Guernsey, 426
- Holmes, 423
- Licking 399
- Harrison, 385
- Carroll, 377
Local 1st Day Gun Season Deer Harvest
Through Dec. 1, 76,822 deer were harvested through bow season. Ohio’s two-day youth hunt counted 6,234 deer.
Gun season will continue through Dec. 8.
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