Preliminary Archery and Shotgun Deer Season Figures

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For the archery deer season, a preliminary total of 2,888 deer were checked in at official check stations according to staff at MassWildlife. The Western District check stations tallied 251 deer while Connecticut Valley District stations reported 352. Central District stations had 711 deer checked, Northeast District 575 and Southeast District checked 999. Last year's final archery total was 3,045.

The shotgun season for deer opened statewide on November 29 and ran through December 4 on Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard, and through December 11 across the remainder of the state. Preliminary figures for deer checked in for the shotgun season statewide totalled 6,247. The breakdown of numbers by District check stations were: Western District 729; Connecticut Valley District 1,098; Central District (1 station not reported) 1,566; Northeast District 882 and Southeast District with 1,972 (2 stations not reported). Additionally, 167 deer were taken during the Quabbin Controlled Hunt.

"We have a large and healthy deer herd," said Bill Woytek, MassWildife's Deer Project Leader. "We are on track with the overall trends in harvest." During the 2003 shotgun season a total of 6,824 deer were checked. The highest shotgun season kill on record was 1995 when 8,131 deer were taken. Deer hunters are reminded that the muzzleloader season is open through December 31, 2004 and hunters must have an antlerless deer permit to take antlerless deer.