Over the previous seven days Ohio’s archers either were battling hunter fatigue or else had run out of tags.
Only 2,180 deer were taken between December 29th and January 5th, and as noted in the Ohio Division of Wildlife’s weekly deer kill summary. This summary is issued each Wednesday.
In all and as noted in the Wildlife Division’s January 6th summary, 167,541 deer had been killed for the all-inclusive to-date seasons. The December 30th report noted a then to-dated all-inclusive to-date kill of 165,361 animals.
For a relatively close comparison, the January 7th 2015 to-date tally was 167,399 animals. Meanwhile the apples-to-apples look with the respective 2014 to-date kill was 184,891 deer.
However, those apples aren’t really the variety. The most recent to-date deer figure of 167,541 deer does not include animals taken during the statewide four-day muzzle-loading season. For a very good reason, too; that being, this season isn’t set to start until this Saturday, January 9th.
On the other hand the January 7th 2015 to-date figure does include that year’s four-day muzzle-loading season, which ran January 2nd to 5th 2015. That season produced a deer kill of 13,726 animals.
Subtract that 13,726 from the January 7th 2015 to-date tally of 167,399 animals and a better comparison is 153,673 deer for a side-by-side look with the current January 6th 2016 to-date deer kill of 167,541.
Thus, the to-date deer kill continues its weekly trend of seeing more deer taken by hunters than animals were killed at roughly the same point one year ago.
And going one step further, the 2014 to-date deer kill of 184,891 animals included the 16,464 deer shot during that year’s January 4th to 7th muzzle-loading season. So subtracting the muzzle-loading kill shows a more reflective (to the current to-date tally) to-date total of 168,427 animals.
Or looked at it from a different angle, Ohio’s deer hunters appear poised to beat 2014’s deer kill and are almost certain to way better the 2015 mark.
In a further look at the current numbers we see that one county – Coshocton County – has a to-date deer kill exceeding 5,000 animals; that tally being 5,065 deer.
Also, five of Ohio’s 88 counties have to-date deer kills exceeding 4,000 animals. They are: Ashtabula County (4,347 deer); Knox County (4,004 deer); Licking County (4,697 deer); Muskingum County (4,414 deer); and Tuscarawas County (4,293 deer).
Another 10 counties have to-date deer kills exceeding 3,000 animals. They are: Adams County (3,742 deer); Athens County (3,480 deer); Carroll County (3,141 deer); Guernsey County (3,909 deer); Harrison County (3,389 deer); Hocking County (3,276 deer); Holmes County (3,355 deer); Meigs County (3,133 deer); Trumbull County (3,005 deer); and Washington County (3,128 deer).
However, there are still 27 of Ohio’s 88 counties with to date deer kills of less than 1,000 animals each. The Bottom Five in descending order are: Mercer County (574 deer); Van Wart County (467 deer); Madison County (441 deer); Ottawa County (349 deer); and Fayette County (288 deer).
Next Wednesday’s (January 13th) weekly to-date deer kill tally will include figures from Ohio’s statewide muzzle-loading deer-hunting season, which should largely tell where in the pecking order of deer harvests this season falls.By Jeffrey L. Frischkorn
Jeff is the retired News-Herald reporter who covered the earth sciences, the area's three county park systems and the outdoors for the newspaper. During his 30 years with The News-Herald Jeff was the recipient of more than 125 state, regional and national journalism awards. He also is a columnist and features writer for the Ohio Outdoor News, which is published every other week and details the outdoors happenings in the state.