It was a busy weekend for deer hunters across the state last week. The Missouri Department of Conservation reports that almost 100,000 deer were harvested in Missouri during the opening weekend of the November fall firearms deer season.
Preliminary data from the Missouri Department of Conservation shows deer hunters in Missouri killed 99,567 deer Nov. 10-11. Of the deer killed, 55,887 were antlered bucks, 9,573 were button bucks and 34,107 were does. Last year, hunters checked 94,886 deer during the opening weekend.
Top counties for opening weekend were Franklin with 2,057 deer checked; Callaway with 1,971; and Benton with 1,875.
In Central-Missouri, the reporting county and the number of deer killed include Cole County, 740; Boone County, 1,321; Maries County, 916; Moniteau County, 725; Morgan County, 1,785; Miller County, 1,255; and Osage County, 1,847.
Because there are few predators in Missouri, without hunting the deer population would soon get too large, resulting in widespread starvation. Hunting still leaves plenty of deer left to reproduce.
The November portion of fall firearms deer seasons continues through Nov. 20. Archery deer season opens again Nov. 21 and runs through Jan. 15. The late youth portion runs Nov. 23-25. The antlerless portion runs Nov. 30 through Dec. 2. The alternative methods portion runs Dec. 22 through Jan. 1.
For more information on deer hunting in Missouri, see MDC’s 2018 Fall Deer & Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information booklet, available where permits are sold and at bit.ly/2pamBwF.