You won't believe the total deer harvest number in Missouri's annual two-day youth hunt. The early numbers are incredible.
The Missouri Department of Conservation preliminary reports show their annual early season youth hunt was astoundingly successful. The two-day hunt recorded an astonishing deer harvest number, with more than 17,400 deer killed by young hunters aged 6-15.
The deer registration numbers indicate young hunters harvested more than 10,000 antlered deer, more than 1,600 button bucks and more than 5,600 does. The season ran from Oct. 28-29.
"The increase in harvest during the early youth portion compared to last year is likely due to the excellent weather over the weekend, which was favorable for deer movement," MDC Deer Biologist Barb Keller said. "Weather during early youth season last year was particularly poor, with highs in the 80s throughout much of the state."
Missouri has historically had high harvest numbers for their early youth hunt. While the 2016-17 and 2015-16 seasons were down a bit with more than 11,000 and 13,000 harvested deer respectively, in years past, the numbers have been even more impressive than this year's.
The 2014-15 season saw 18,294 deer killed, 2013-14 had 18,676 deer and 2012-13 had an incredible 19,277 deer registered.
Of course, those numbers are dwarfed by the annual firearm totals, which tend to hover around 200,000 deer. While these numbers are impressive, they're half of what they are in some other states, like Wisconsin. And, that's not counting all the other deer hunting seasons, including muzzleloader, archery, late youth hunt, antlerless deer season and alternative method season.
Still, for a two-day hunt for kids, harvesting more than 17,000 deer is very impressive.
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