Athens, OH – Muzzleloader hunters took 420 deer during last week’s early muzzleloader deer season according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife.

Hunters took 161 deer at Salt Fork Wildlife Area, 154 deer in the Wildcat Hollow region, and 42 deer at Shawnee State Forest. During last year’s early muzzleloader hunt, hunters took a total of 516 deer for the season; 254 deer at Salt Fork Wildlife Area, 176 deer at Wildcat Hollow, and 86 deer at Shawnee State Forest.

The early muzzleloader season opened Monday, October 17 and closed Saturday, October 22.

Ohio’s various deer hunting seasons coupled with a healthy population gives hunters a good opportunity for success. Archery season opened September 24 and runs through February 5, 2012. Youth deer gun season is November 19 and 20. Deer gun season will open November 28 and extend through December 4, and be open for a weekend hunt on December 17 and 18. The statewide muzzleloader season is January 7 through 10, 2012.

Hunters interested in donating venison to food banks are reminded that the ODNR Division of Wildlife has partnered with Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry (FHFH) to help pay for the processing of donated venison. Hunters who donate their deer to a participating food bank are not required to pay the processing cost as long as funding for the effort lasts. More information about this program can be found online at www.fhfh.org.

For additional information on all of Ohio’s deer hunting seasons and requirements, hunters are advised to review the 2011-2012 Ohio Hunting and Trapping Regulations.

The ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at www.ohiodnr.com.

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