More than 65,000 deer checked during gun hunting season - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

More than 65,000 deer checked during gun hunting season

The ODNR says hunters checked 65,485 white-tailed deer during Ohio's 2014 gun hunting season the first week of December. (Source: MGN Online) The ODNR says hunters checked 65,485 white-tailed deer during Ohio's 2014 gun hunting season the first week of December. (Source: MGN Online)
COLUMBUS, OH (WOIO) - Hunters checked 65,485 white-tailed deer during Ohio's 2014 gun hunting season, Dec. 1-7, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Rifles using specific straight-walled cartridges were allowed during Ohio's deer-gun season. Gun hunters took advantage of the new opportunity and checked 5,360 deer with straight-walled cartridge rifles.

Hunters have checked 148,830 deer so far in all 2014 hunting seasons, compared to 162,720 at the same point last year. Hunters harvested 75,408 deer during the 2013 deer-gun season.

Until recently, the populations in nearly all of Ohio's counties were above their target numbers. In the last few years, through increased harvests, dramatic strides have been made in many counties to bring those populations closer toward their goal, and the effectiveness of these herd management efforts are reflected in the number of deer checked this season. Once a county's deer population is near goal, harvest regulations are adjusted to maintain the population.

Counties reporting the highest number of checked deer during the 2014 gun season: 

-Coshocton: 2,308

-Muskingum: 2,084

-Tuscarawas: 2,074

-Guernsey: 1,788

-Ashtabula: 1,730

-Knox: 1,727

-Licking: 1,655

-Harrison: 1,491

-Carroll: 1,477

-Belmont: 1,428

According to the ODNR, hunting is the best and most effective management tool for maintaining Ohio's healthy deer population. During the 2013-2014 hunting season, Ohio hunters checked 191,459 deer. Ohio ranks fifth nationally in resident hunters and 11th in the number of jobs associated with hunting-related industries. Hunting has an economic impact of more than $853 million in Ohio through the sale of equipment, fuel, food, lodging and more, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation's Hunting in America: An Economic Force for Conservation publication.

The ODNR Division of Wildlife remains committed to properly managing Ohio's deer populations through a combination of regulatory and programmatic changes. The goal of Ohio's Deer Management Program is to provide a deer population that maximizes recreational opportunities, while minimizing conflicts with landowners and motorists. This ensures that Ohio's deer herd is maintained at a level that is both acceptable to most, and biologically sound.

Find more information about deer hunting in the Ohio 2014-2015 Hunting and Trapping Regulations or at wildohio.gov. An updated deer harvest report is posted online each Wednesday. Archery season remains open through Feb. 1, 2015. The muzzleloader season is Jan. 2-5, 2015.

Ohio's first modern day deer-gun season opened in 1943 in three counties, and hunters harvested 168 deer. Deer hunting was allowed in all 88 counties in 1956, and hunters harvested 3,911 deer during that one-week season.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

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