Ohio deer hunters harvest state’s ninth most whitetails since 1900
A new article from Outdoor News!
“Ohio’s 2022-2023 deer hunters captured ninth place in the total number of whitetails killed since 1900.
The season similarly saw the third largest-ever take of bucks along with a 40% success rate when numbers of animals killed are lined up with the number of licenses issued.
In all, preliminary figures show that Ohio’s archery, firearms and muzzleloading hunters killed 210,977 animals. The last time the 200,000 total deer kill ceiling was breached was in the 2012-2013 season when 218,910 deer were taken. The all-time leader was the 2009-2010 season when 261,260 whitetails were harvested.
“To sum things up, we started the season with lots of deer on the landscape in most parts of the state, and the hunters that participated were very successful,” said Clint McCoy, the Ohio Division of Wildlife’s lead deer management biologist.
As McCoy explained, the agency conducts a series of calculations prior to each season to get an estimate of how an upcoming deer kill will likely shake out. This numbers crunching is primarily based on “past harvest trends and takes into consideration any expected changes due to regulation changes,” McCoy said.
“This usually gets us in the ballpark, but any number of uncontrollable factors can influence the harvest,” McCoy said. “Our pre-season harvest (estimate) was between 208,000 and 215,000 deer.
“The growth in the deer herd being seen over the last several years – combined with the bag limit increases in several counties – contributed to a harvest of over 210,000. That figure is 9% larger than the three- year average.”
Consequently, said McCoy, “given what we have been seeing over the last few years and our preseason estimates, the final tally was not unexpected.”
Some specific details emerged in the tally breakdown. For starters, said McCoy, the kill of bucks – which is a key indicator of population change due to the stability of the regulations – was 7% above the three-year average.
“That combined 89,984 buck harvest figure is the third largest buck harvest in Ohio’s history, too, and we did it with at least 20% fewer hunters than we had in 2009, which was the most recent year in which hunters reported a buck harvest greater than this one,” McCoy said.
Also, the antlerless deer kill was up about 11% over the three-year average and was likely boosted by some of the bag limit increases in the western half of the state, McCoy said.”
The full article can be found here.
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