Ohio Deer Hunters Clear Yearly Average with Harvests During 2020 Gun Season

by Will Shepard

During the week-long gun season for Whitetail Deer, Ohio had incredible success. In fact, Ohio hunters actually surpassed the typical yearly average by a big margin.

The gun season in Ohio runs from November 30 to December 6. Even though the season has been over for a while, it took the state some time to get the correct numbers. According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), a total of 71, 650 Whitetail Deer were harvested in that time.

This is number is well over the three-year state average of 65,566. Several factors contribute to the uptick in deer taken this year. For starters, according to ODNR, roughly 310,000 people got out to hunt.

Even though this may seem like a large number of people, the number of people who got their own deer was low. The ODNR says that it is the lowest harvest rate been since the 1980s. So, despite only a small number of people successfully harvesting deer, there were a lot of people out in the field.

“Surveys show Ohio’s deer hunters still participate during this week, whether they serve as mentors or accompany friends.”

Ohio Hunters Use a Particular Gun

Not only were there a lot of people in the field factoring into the high harvest numbers, but also a particular gun. The straight-walled cartridge rifle has become the gun of choice for Ohio hunters.

In 2014, the gun was made legal. Its popularity has correlated this year with high harvest numbers over the entire deer season. In fact, 44 percent of the deer harvested were shot by a straight-walled cartridge rifle.

Additionally, muzzleloaders were responsible for six percent of the gun harvest numbers. And, interestingly, handguns harvested just one percent of the deer.

During archery season, Ohio hunters were successful as well. Through December 6, ODNR reports that 79, 499 deer in total have been harvested since the beginning of the 2020 season.

Whitetail deer overall is the most popular animal to hunt in Ohio. In particular, Coshocton County typically has the most amount of deer taken during the gun week. This year was no exception as Ohio hunters took just shy of 3,000 deer.

However, there is still one day in the muzzleloading season remaining for people to hunt Whitetail Deer. After January 5, archery season begins again on February 7, 2021.

Last year, Ohio hunters harvested 63, 567 deer during the gun season, so this year stands out as an excellent one.

[H/T Logan Daily News]