Have you ever wondered how many deer the typical hunter takes in a season? These handy graphs from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (DNR) provide some answers to that question, showing the number of deer taken per each successful hunter during the 2011-2012 Ohio deer season.

This is the first time the Ohio DNR has compiled data in this way, therefore they do not have data on deer per hunter from previous years, according to Central Ohio Information Specialist Lindsay Deering, who put the data together.

She said the total number of deer harvested was 219,698 by 157,726 successful hunters. Those hunters are only about a third of the hunters who purchased a license for that season, meaning two-thirds of hunters came away with zero deer.

The graph below lists how many hunters took the number of deer listed along the bottom of the chart. Note that the last number of 6 deer taken actually means 6 or more deer, but DNR Wildlife Communication Specialist Jamey Graham said so few hunters harvest 6 or more deer that the percentage is insignificant.

The graph below shows what percentage of successful hunters took which number of deer.

Graham speculated as to why most hunters only take one deer. One potential reason is that hunters do not have enough time to hunt. “That’s why we don’t see more hunters in the field in the first place,” Graham said. The second reason may be that the opportunity does not present itself again. Even successful hunters who have taken one deer may try and try but are not successful in their hunt. And the third may be the weather. Even if hunters intend on spending the whole week gun or bow hunting, the weather does not cooperate.

Data charts courtesy of Ohio DNR

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2 thoughts on “How Many Deer Does an Average Hunter Harvest in a Season?

  1. Good info. The main reason hunters only take one deer was not mentioned: Many only need one deer in their freezer each year. Also, those that trophy hunt may not see anything they want to pull the trigger on of those that are in the “didn’t harvest even one deer” section. In our family of 4 we all hunt but only need 2 deer. If it’s a trophy & we have our 2 already, then we donate the meat to Hunters Feeding the Hungry, but usually the tags go unfilled.

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