This season’s deer kill could hit 186,000, falling within game biologists’ estimate
Even with two more weekly to-date reporting periods left, Ohio’s current take of deer stands at 1,320 more animals than were harvested all of last year.
The present deer kill totals 183,649 animals as of Jan. 23, while the combined total for all deer-hunting seasons last year was 182,329.
And this year’s to-date kill is also 5,532 animals ahead of where the comparable figure stood last year at this time (178,117 deer as of Jan. 24, 2017).
Likewise, the 183,649 figure represents an increase of 1,961 more animals when compared to the immediate previous weekly to-date (Jan. 16, 2018) tally of 181,688 animals.
Thus, tack on another 4,000 or so animals to the present to-date number and a projected all-seasons’ deer kill of around 186,000 deer is not out of line. And that figure would fall neatly within the estimate provided by game biologists with the Ohio Division of Wildlife.
For more comparisons, the total all-seasons’ deer kill for 2014-2015 was 175,801 animals and 188,335 for 2015-2016.
In looking at other current to-date numbers, there are eight counties with total deer exceeding 4,000 animals each. In alphabetical order (with their respective to-date 2016-2017 figures in parentheses) these counties are: Ashtabula, 5,005 (4,941); Coschocton, 6,472 (5,796); Guernsey, 4,689 (4,494); Holmes, 4,047 (3,638); Knox, 4,596 (4,429); Licking, 4,910 (4,815); Muskingum, 5,229 (5,031); and Tuscarawas, 5,632 (4,914).
As can be noted, several of these counties have scored remarkable to-date gains when stacked next to their respective 2016-2017 to-date numbers. In Coschocton’s case, the increase is 676 animals, and for its next-door neighbor, Tuscarawas County, the increase is 718 animals. In all, 66 of Ohio’s 88 counties have recorded increases in their respective to-date deer kills.
There are also 26 counties which have yet to record deer kills of 1,000 animals each, and of which three have yet to see respective deer kills exceeding 500 each: Fayette County, 355; Ottawa County, 474; and Van Wert County, 498.
Continuing as the county with the greatest decline in to-date deer kill numbers is Jefferson County. Its current to-date deer kill figure stands at 1,882. Last year’s comparable to-date deer kill number there was 2,752 for a decline of 870 deer, or a roughly 32-percent drop.