Closing in on the rut, Ohio deer harvest numbers still lagging

Athens, Ohio — With the advent of the rut in Ohio, the state’s deer hunters are beginning to take more animals, the figures showing an additional 7,079 deer killed between the Oct. 23 and Oct. 30 reporting periods.

However, based on the weekly data made available via the Ohio Division of Wildlife’s computer-based harvest reporting system, 972 fewer deer have been taken compared with the same numbers a year ago.

In short, so far this year – and as of Oct. 30 – Ohio’s deer hunters have killed 26,705 animals. For that same period in 2017, 27,677 deer were taken.

How the deluge and flooding conditions that are plaguing the state at the moment will play out verses the rut’s acceleration won’t be known until the November reporting-week-period figures are available. Those numbers will be released by the Wildlife Division Nov. 7.

Based on the Oct. 30 to-date numbers, of Ohio’s 88 counties, 26 saw gains from 2017 to 2018, while two counties saw identical figures. The remaining counties saw declines.

Among the gainers (with the 2017 figures in parentheses): Allen – 193 (176); Carroll – 418 (381); Columbiana – 410 (386); Coshocton – 957 (912); Hardin – 196 (171); Jefferson – 208 (163); Knox – 656 (618); Medina – 438 (382); Meigs – 364 (320); Noble – 330 (302); Portage – 553 (461); Stark – 532 (494); and Wood – 177 (160).

At the opposite end are counties that have posted to-date declines from their respective 2017 numbers. Among them (comparable 2017 to-date figures in parentheses): Adams – 405 (484); Ashtabula – 801 (892); Brown – 329 (337); Clarmont – 457 (505); Franklin – 161 (182); Guernsey – 493 (513); Huron – 332 (359); Lake – 196 (237); Licking – 740 (814); Lorain – 404 (448); Lucas – 156 (224); Morrow – 221 (270); Richland – 539 (582); Trumbull – 810 (814); and Vinton – 275 (321).

In terms of antlered deer taken to-date verses the comparable 2017 to-date number, the figures are 10,432 and 11,040, respectively. Thus, as the annual rut begins, the number of antlered deer being shot so far is off last year’s pace.

Generally in Ohio, the peak of the rut falls around Veteran’s Day (Nov. 11).

Categories: Bloggers on Hunting, Ohio – Jeffrey Frischkorn, Whitetail Deer

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