Our Roller Coaster Deer Season

Columbus – Hunters took 17,108 deer during Ohio’s four-day
muzzleloader season, Jan. 8-11, with Tuscarawas County again
leading the state with 914 deer checked.

In 2010, a preliminary total of 24,078 deer was taken during
muzzleloader season, according to the DNR Division of
Wildlife.

Counties reporting the highest number of deer checked during the
muzzleloader season included: Tuscarawas-914, Harrison-761,
Licking-671, Guernsey-665, Washington-527, Coshocton-464,
Athens-449, Ross-438, Meigs-433, and Belmont-432.

A total of 227,469 deer have been harvested so far this season when
combining the gun seasons, early and statewide muzzleloader
seasons, and the first nine weeks of the archery season. Hunters
took a total of 261,314 deer during all of last year’s hunting
seasons.

Hunters can continue to enjoy deer hunting through Feb. 6 as the
archery season continues.

Hunters can still donate extra venison to organizations assisting
Ohioans in need. The division is collaborating with Farmers and
Hunters Feeding the Hungry to help pay for the processing of
donated venison. Hunters who give their deer to a food bank are not
required to pay the processing cost as long as the deer are taken
to a participating processor and funding for the effort
lasts.

Many hunters that Ohio Outdoor News interviewed prior to the start
of muzzleloader season said they had already killed a buck and were
no longer hunting. A few said they would hunt the muzzleloader
season and late archery for antlerless deer.  Though far from a
scientific analysis, this offers at least anecdotal evidence that
fewer hunters participated in muzzleloader season this year.

“This season’s been real funny,” said Mike Tonkovich, the Division
of Wildlife’s deer project leader. “It’s been a roller coaster ride
to say the least.”

For a complete rundown on the muzzleloader season, read the Jan. 21
issue of Ohio Outdoor News.

Categories: Ohio – Mike Moore

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