West Virginia Deer News
Fall hunting regulations finalized May 5, 2013 West Virginia, The Logan Banner
... the Commission voted to indefinitely table the option to reconsider the early September archery and muzzleloading deer hunts. More than half of the respondents were in opposition. The Commission did likewise for reducing the annual buck limit from three to two, though more than two-thirds of the hunters favored it...
Attendance improves at regulation meeting, deer harvest March 23, 2013 West Virginia, The Inter-Mountain
... In 2012, a total of 132,261 white-tailed deer were harvested with all the combined deer seasons. This includes all the special urban city archery hunts. Last year, 12 cities (Barboursville, Bethlehem, Bridgeport, Charleston, Harpers Ferry, Harrisville, North Hills, Parkersburg, Morgantown, Ronceverte, Weirton and Wheeling) reported a total of 713 deer kills. Other special hunts were conducted at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Pocahontas County, and on Blennerhassett Island State Park ..
Twin Falls controls park deer population February 18, 2013 West Virginia, Wycoreport
... Park visitors reported seeing as many as 200 to 250 deer as they drove through the park during the 1980s and early 1990s. “Now, you might see 15,” said park Superintendent Scott Durham. At the time, Durham explained, the large deer herd on the park were over-browsing the food supply. As a result, he predicted then, the deer would destroy their future food supply and die from disease and parasites due to malnutrition. “That didn’t happen,” Durham said last week. “What did happen is the deer stopped reproducing.” ... response to a reduced food supply ... “We have observational evidence to support this,” emphasized Durham, who is a wildlife biologist...
Small fenced area helps to keep foliage protected February 18, 2013 Wycoreport [This is the story that appeared in the Aug. 17, 1992 issue]
... Deer exclosures, a small area fenced to keep deer from eating the inside foliage, were erected ... to show that deer are over-browsing the food supply.... The over-population is causing mass destruction to the forest and in the end will cause the demise of the deer... In the May 18 edition, Durham said, “The deer are destroying their own habitat, eating their own future food.” ...
Managing the deer in Harper's Ferry February 3, 2013 West Virginia, Martinsburg Journal
The National Park Service estimates the whitetail deer population in Harpers Ferry lies between 80 to 260 per square mile ... Due to the movement around the town's boundaries and seasonal behavior of the animals, no exact population count was established... Between September and December, nine hunters harvested 28 does within the boundaries of Harpers Ferry ... "We will continue to watch over the deer and look at the population. Everybody wants deer in the community, just not so many," [Laura Clark, master naturalist of the Potomac Valley Chapter] Non-lethal alternatives to urban management
WV hunters kill 131,444 deer, 1233 turkeys in 2012 January 14, 2013 West Virginia, State Journal
...preliminary counts of game checking tags indicate West Virginia hunters harvested a total of 131,444 white-tailed deer during the recently completed bucks-only, antlerless, muzzleloader, archery and youth/Class Q/Class XS deer seasons. The year's total harvest was three percent below the 2011 deer harvest of 135,696, according to Director Frank Jezioro, who said a total of 56,658 bucks, 45,169 antlerless season deer, 24,571 bow-killed deer and 5,046 muzzleloader season deer were taken during the 2012 season.
Bridgeport, Numbers Released for 2012 Bridgeport Urban Deer Hunt January 14, 2013 West Virginia, Wvfx
"There were so many complaints from the citizens to council over to the amount of deer causing so much damage to their shrubbery, their flowers and the pacts of deer that have been in the city that the city voted to make this an option ... the DNR told Bridgeport Police those hunters killed 107 deer. That's more than every year combined since the hunt started four years ago.
Deer management decision making time, decline of deer January 13, 2013 West Virginia, The Logan Banner
... Deer kill numbers are rolling in at roughly half what they were a short decade back... Habitat quality and environmental factors from the likes of predators and disease to mast failure and winter severity all have and play important roles... Logging had all but ceased during the Great Recession and habitat thus suffered. Mast failures were woven in with a return of winter, tag teaming on occasion for major winter kills. EHD disease ... CWD ...
Meeting of DNR biologists key to regulating deer herd January 5, 2013 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
... Late this month, Division of Natural Resources biologists will hole up in an Elkins meeting room for two days and decide what this year's deer- and bear-hunting seasons will look like. If the bag limit changes on antlerless deer ... "It can get pretty intense," said Paul Johansen, the DNR's assistant wildlife chief.
South Charleston, SC considering urban deer hunt January 3, 2013, West Virginia, Daily Mail
... A committee has been formed to study the issue and will likely hold its first public meeting by the end of the month ... Mayor Frank Mullens said ... Ward 8 Councilman Jeff Means will be the committee chairman. Other members will include Police Chief Brad Rinehart and concerned citizens on both sides of the issue. Citizens on one side of the issue, Means said, are incensed because of damage to their yards and flowers. Others feed the deer and treat them like pets...
WV Deer Hunters Harvest 56,173 Bucks During Buck Firearms Season December 10, 2012 West Virginia, Wboy.com
Preliminary data collected from game checking stations across West Virginia show that W.Va. deer hunters harvest 56,173 bucks during the two-week buck firearms season ... seven percent less than the 2011 harvest, which was 60,157 ...
Muzzleloader deer season opens a week early this year November 28, 2012 West Virginia, Parkersburg News
... Muzzleloader season will run through Dec. 8... For more information, consult the 2012-2013 West Virginia Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary or go to www.wvdnr.gov
Economy Slows Down Hunting Season November 27, 2012 West Virginia, WHAG
... "This year seems to be a lot slower than previous years," says checkpoint owner Dorothy Snow. "But it's like each year with the economy the way it is, people don't have jobs, they don't have money, they can't afford a license, can't afford the guns and shells, ammo's going up extremely high."
Second week of deer numbers doing well in W.Va. November 27, 2012 West Virginia, Huntington Herald Dispatch
... Across the river in Ohio, deer hunting season is just getting started. But, a new online system allows hunters to check in their deer without having it inspected at a check-in station... For a complete list of deer check-in stations and hunting information in West Virginia, visit http://www.wvdnr.gov
Deer hunters who have their harvests looked at help state better manage herd November 24, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
Confirming the age of hunter-killed deer by prying their mouths open and examining their teeth is just one of the tasks ... information from biological stations has shown that the average whitetail taken during the buck season is older and has better antlers than deer killed a decade ago. Wildlife officials attribute the trend to a 1997 regulation change that allows private-land hunters to kill either antlered bucks or antlerless deer during the buck season...
330,000 Hunters to Hit Woods; W.Va's Deer Gun Season Begins Monday November 18, 2012 West Virginia, Wheeling Intelligencer
... firearm buck gun season is scheduled to run Monday through Dec. 1. It is open in all counties except Logan, Mingo, McDowell and Wyoming ... hunters harvested 60,157 bucks during the two-week season, an increase of 38 percent from the 2010 harvest... Deer hunters spend an estimated $230 million in West Virginia ...
It could be a big year for big bucks November 17, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
... In 1998, the DNR gave private-land deer hunters the option of taking either a buck or a doe during the buck season. Foster said the change made a significant difference in buck-kill dynamics. ".. it wasn't unusual to see 80 percent of a county's yearling bucks get killed each year ... since hunters have the option of taking an antlerless deer, the percentage of yearling bucks being killed has dropped below 50 percent. More yearlings are surviving, and they grow bigger antlers the following year."
Doe-hunting portion of buck season could play out differently November 17, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
... "That October season is designed to take antlerless deer out of the population before the rut takes place, so it stands to reason there will be fewer antlerless deer out there," said Paul Johansen, assistant wildlife chief for the state Division of Natural Resources. "We don't yet have a handle on how many were killed, but we don't think it was a lot."
2012 West Virginia Deer Gun Seasons Fact Sheet November 15, 2012 West Virginia, WDTV
The West Virginia firearm buck gun season is Nov. 19 – Dec. 1. It is open in all counties except Logan, Mingo, McDowell and Wyoming. Approximately 330,000 licensed hunters will be in West Virginia's woods during this season...
Snow Challenges High Country Deer November 8, 2012 West Virginia, West Virginia MetroNews
Whitetail deer in West Virginia 's high country already struggle even when conditions are normal, but the most recent snowstorm which arrived with Hurricane Sandy has left them completely struggling... "They look really tired." ... district game biologist Rob Sylvester. "In 2009 we actually had deer 'yarding' a little bit. The snow packs were so high in the mountains they were looking for food anywhere they could find it."
Charleston, Officials see success with urban hunting October 30, 2012 West Virginia,
... A total of 93 animals were killed last year, City Manager David Molgaard said. "I absolutely think this is working," ... Twenty-eight deer were killed in 2007, and 36 were reported the following year. That number jumped to 54 when the new regulation was passed, according to figures provided by the city. "I don't think we'll ever completely eradicate deer from our city," ...
W.Va. opens 2 new wildlife management areas October 27, 2012 West Virginia
San Francisco Chronicle
,,, The Sideling Hill Wildlife Management Area covers about 2,500 acres in Morgan County. The heavily forested property was the site of a hunting club before being acquired by the state. It will be managed for forest game species such as deer ... The nearly 3,200-acre Little Canaan Wildlife Management area in Tucker County ... is mostly forested, and it provides hunting opportunities for deer, bear, grouse, woodcock and turkey.
Hunters must adjust to Oct. doe season October 20, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
... "The specific benefit to the deer herd is that it will compress the breeding season," Johansen explained. "When there are too many females in a deer population, the rut gets extended because it takes too much time for bucks to service all the does." Instead of taking a couple of weeks, the rut can stretch to almost a month... an extended rut inevitably leads to an extended birthing season for fawns the following spring ... "When the fawn drop is spread out over a long period of time, newborn fawns become much more susceptible to predators," he said. "Coyotes and other predators have several weeks to pick fawns off when they're most helpless."
South Charleston to consider urban deer hunt October 18, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
... About two years ago ... Mayor Frank Mullens and Police Chief Brad Rinehart opposed the idea, citing the number of homes in close quarters and few tracts of land large enough for a hunt to take place. "... It's a divisive issue, but we have to take the time to at least discuss it," he said.
Mast Production Up for 2012 September 29, 2012 West Virginia, West Virginia MetroNews
...The DNR's 42nd Annual Mast Survey and Hunting Outlook is out and the production for the fall of 2012 is overall up over that 42-year average, but the conclusion is the mast is very spotty... The species of greatest importance to deer ... "All the white oaks--particularly white oak and chestnut oak were really productive this year," said Biologist Randy Tucker who co-authored the study]... White Oak acorns are up 43% above average. Chestnut oak production is 86% higher. Black oak/Red oak production is about 29% above average while scarlet oak is right at the average mark ...
Late-summer outbreak kills hundreds of whitetails September 29, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
... Jim Crum, deer project leader for the state Division of Natural Resources, said ... "This year's EHD outbreak is not nearly as prevalent or widespread as the one we had in 2007 ... So far we've had confirmed mortality in Calhoun, Jefferson, Greenbrier, Hancock, Mason, Monroe and Pleasants counties. I don't have an accurate count right now, but the numbers are in the hundreds and not the thousands." ...
DNR officials expecting hunters to take advantage of earlier start to deer archery season, earn-a-buck September 29, 2012 West Virginia, Charleston Gazette
West Virginia's deer archery season got under way Saturday, two weeks earlier than it had in the past ... more hunting days - especially on weekends - almost always result in more deer being killed... "In certain counties, bowhunters who take a buck must kill an antlerless deer before they're allowed to take a second antlered buck," Johansen explained... To get the older-age, bigger-antlered bucks they want, they're harvesting more antlerless deer." ... The regulation, dubbed "earn-a-buck lite" ...
Getting the Lay of the Land, GIS September 22, 2012 West Virginia, WVGazzette
Division of Natural Resources officials have made high-quality color topographic maps available on the agency's website... , biologists who want to establish deer-population level guidelines might study satellite-generated GIS data on forest cover and agricultural crops to determine how much food is available in a given area... Visitors to the DNR's website, www.wvdnr.gov, can access the maps by going to the site's Hunting section and clicking on the "New WMA Topo Maps" link ...
Search for news and information by keyword above or find links to state news stories organized by topic.
West Virginia Data: Deer population of about 800,000 to 900,000 prior to hunting season. A low of about 1,000 deer in 1910.
Other useful links:
- DNR's 42nd Annual Mast Survey and Hunting Outlook
- 2011 - 2012 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Summary
- West Virginia Division of Environmental Protection
- West Virginia State Parks and Forests …to “promote conservation by preserving and protecting natural areas of unique or exceptional scenic, scientific, cultural, archaeological, or historical significance and to provide outdoor recreational opportunities for the citizens of this state and its visitors.”
Deer Management: There are two components of deer management: harvest management and habitat management. Both are important in determining the quality and quantity of the deer population; however, harvest management is the component which is most often overlooked in a good deer management program...
Fundamentals of Deer Management File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat . . . developing an ideal deer management program. Different objectives may require totally different management actions ... basic deer management programs.