STATEWIDE MUZZLELOADER SEASON ENDS|
This year’s total deer season harvest will exceed all-time record of 216,443
COLUMBUS, OH - Hunters took 22,413 deer during Ohio’s four-day muzzleloader season, December 27-30, with Tuscarawas County again leading the state with 949 deer checked, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. Last year, a preliminary total of 23,056 deer were taken during muzzleloader season.
“With the muzzleloader season results, Ohio will easily exceed the all-time deer harvest record of 216,443 set in 2004,” said Steven A. Gray, chief of the ODNR Division of Wildlife. “Ohio’s deer management program has become a model of excellence in the United States. Fortunately, our deer herd is in great condition and the challenge is to keep that quality through research and management.”
During the last two decades, Ohio’s muzzleloader season has consistently grown in popularity. Twenty years ago, the statewide muzzleloader season accounted for 5 percent of the total deer kill, and today it constitutes 12 percent of the total annual deer harvest.
Counties reporting the highest number of deer checked during the muzzleloader season included: Tuscarawas - 949; Harrison - 834; Washington - 792; Guernsey - 724; Licking -705; Coshocton -683; Holmes -681; Athens -654; Monroe - 612; and Jefferson - 601.
Hunters have killed a preliminary total of 214,337 deer across the state since Ohio's deer hunting seasons opened on September 30. Archery hunters took 45,733 deer during the first six weeks of the statewide archery season, which continues through February 4. The youth season resulted in 8,811 deer bagged. Hunters checked 111,672 deer during the statewide deer-gun season, with another 25,390 taken during the extra gun-hunting weekend. Another 318 deer were taken during the early muzzleloader deer season in late October on three specific hunting areas.
Hunters who wish to share their successes can submit a photo of themselves and the deer they killed this year to ohiodnr.com/wildlife