LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Department of Natural Resources says that 15% fewer deer were harvested during the 2014 hunting season than the year before.
The 2014 report says that 615,000 hunters harvested about 329,000 deer last year. The decline was greatest in the Upper Peninsula where the overall harvest was down nearly 36% according to the DNR.
DNR wildlife biologist Brian Frawley said in the report that the heavy snowfall early in fall, including more than three feet of snow in the U.P. before the November 15 opening of the firearm season was a contributing factor. “Though not as severe as the previous season, this marked the third consecutive rough winter for the deer population in the U.P.,” said Frawley.
Due to the harsh winter, the DNR says that the number of hunters was down in 2014 also. In the U.P., hunters were down 19% from 2013. Deer-vehicle collisions in the U.P. were also down 22% in 2014.
Other statistics from the 2014 season:
- 41% of hunters got a deer in 2014, compared to 43% in 2013
- 11% of hunters got two or more deer
- 27% of hunters got an antlered buck
- Michigan deer hunters spent 8.8 million days afield in 2014