To date, a total of 62,309 deer have been taken with almost an even split between male and female animals.
It is no surprise that the number of deer reported harvest in Owen County has so far outpaced any other county in the Commonwealth. Owen County, with a current harvest of 2,255, is expected to surpass the 3,000 mark by the end of the archery deer season on January 17, 2005. About 1,500 were taken last weekend. Owen County has ranked in the top three harvest counties in Kentucky for the past several seasons.
One other county where more than 1,000 deer were taken on opening weekend (Nov. 13-14) was Ohio County. At this early point in the modern gun deer season, nine other counties have reported harvests of 1,000 or more deer by firearm and archery methods. Those counties include Anderson, Breckinridge, Christian, Crittenden, Grant, Henry, Hopkins, Pendleton and Shelby. The mid-western and northcentral portions of Kentucky are the most highly populated areas of the state, and likewise receive more hunting pressure than other regions.
Trigg County reported 682 deer harvested over the weekend.
The KDFWR hopes that hunters will continue to take antlerless deer especially, which is the major population control method for the deer herd. Those hunting in a Zone 1 or 2 county may take extra antlerless deer with a firearm beyond the two allowable on the statewide deer permit by purchasing a $12.50 bonus antlerless deer permit. Hunters should be sure and check the 2004-05 Kentucky Fall Hunting Guide for exact harvest limits in each deer zone.
Venison is an excellent type of meat for those with health concerns, and can be substituted for almost any dish normally prepared with beef.
The Kentucky modern gun deer season in Zone 1 and 2 counties continues through November 28. In Zone 3 and 4 counties, the season closes after November 22. The total statewide harvest for Kentucky is expected to be approximately 120,000. Kentucky’s pre-season deer population was estimated at 900,000.
Hunters are reminded that harvested deer must be reported by phone, by midnight of the day the animal is recovered. Call 1-800-245-4263 to report harvested deer in Kentucky.