MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Hunters took more than 14,000 deer during the state's four deer hunting seasons last year, an increase of 2.5 percent over 2012, according to the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife.
The 2013 total was 14,107, compared to 13,757 in 2012.
“We estimated there would be an increase in the deer population in 2013 due to two consecutive mild winters,'' state deer biologist Adam Murkowski said. “The number of antlerless deer permits was increased last year by 16 percent in response to these mild winters and we maintained or reduced antlerless deer permits in other regions to promote population growth.''
The number of legal bucks with at least two points on one antler totaled 8,831 in 2013, up 8 percent from 2012, the state said.
Abundant apples, acorns and beechnuts may have resulted in deer being more dispersed than in some previous years, biologists said, but cold temperatures and snow in the November rifle season likely increased the ability of hunters to find, see and shoot deer.
Last fall, hunters took 3,212 deer in the archery season, 1,718 on youth weekend, 6,725 in the November rifle season, and 2,452 during the December muzzleloader season.