First-day deer gun season kill shows mixed results
|Ohio's deer gun season got off to a good start last Monday with hunters statewide generally experiencing more success this year than last.|
Locally, the numbers held a mixed message.
The Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODW) reports 33,607 deer were killed statewide Monday, the first day of the week-long gun season. This represents a 12.5 percent increase over last year.
Locally, the first-day deer take was down in Jackson County, but up in Vinton County. In Jackson County, 720 deer were taken Monday, as compared to 776 on the first day of 2009. In Vinton County, 629 deer were bagged Monday, compared with 548 the first day of last year.
Hunters in Ohio generally had the most success in eastern counties this past Monday. Tuscarawas was the top county with 1,806 deer killed. Other top 10 counties, in order, were Coshocton (1,536), Harrison (1,439), Guernsey (1,406), Holmes (1,312), Licking (1,259), Washington (1,192), Ashtabula (983), Muskingum (930), and Athens (886).
In addition to Athens, Washington, Jackson and Vinton, the first-day take for other Southeastern Ohio area counties were as follows: Ross 734, Meigs 717, Hocking 703, Gallia 607, Scioto 450, Lawrence 406 and Pike 211. Of the 10 counties composing Southeastern Ohio, six showed increases for the first-day deer kill.
Meanwhile, ODW officials, as of late Wednesday afternoon, had reported no fatalities or accidental shootings as the result of the gun season.
"To date, in Southeastern Ohio, it's been an uneventful season so far," reported ODW District 4 Communications Specialist Susie Vance.
The deer gun season will continue this week through Sunday and will have two additional days, Saturday and Sunday, December 18-19.
The Ohio Division of Wildlife estimates the state's deer population is about 750,000 and is predicting that approximately 420,000 hunters will participate in the deer gun season with an $859-million impact through the sale of equipment, fuel, food, lodging and more.
ODW Chief Dave Graham challenges all hunters to make this year special for Ohio's hungry by labeling this Saturday, December 4 as Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry Day (FHFH). Last year, hunters showed they cared by donating nearly 467,000 meals to Ohioans in need.
Hunters who give their deer to a food bank are not required to pay the processing cost as long as the deer are taken to a participating processor and funding for the effort lasts.
Hunters in Jackson County can participate through the Pike County FHFH. Call 740-947-4369 for more information. A participating local butcher is Anna's Deer Processing, located at 2109 Johnson Road, Jackson.
Hunters in Vinton County can participate through the Southeast Ohio FHFH. Call 740-385-6813 for more information.
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