Hunters ended the 2022 muzzleloading season with 12,141 deer checked from Jan. 8 to Tuesday, Jan. 11. Over the past three years, an average of 11,501 deer have been captured with a muzzleloader over the same four-day period.
The top 10 counties for deer harvested in the 2022 muzzleloading season include Coshocton (467), Tuscarawas (455), Guernsey (386), Ashtabula (363), Muskingum (356), Knox (344), Meigs (338), Carroll (322), Lick (316) and Harrison (301). Coshocton County led the state in the 2021 muzzleloading season with 367 deer checked, while hunters captured 9,708 deer statewide.
“Ohio offers many opportunities for deer hunters to get into the field, and that includes the recently ended muzzleloading season,” said Kendra Wecker, wildlife division chief. “It has been a successful season for many hunters. All deer harvested in Ohio must be registered in the Division of Wildlife’s Game Control System. The data collected in the system is used to manage the Ohio deer herd for sustainable populations in the future.
Harvest records show that during the 2022 muzzleloading season, hunters took 3,333 bucks (27% of deer taken), 7,239 does (60%) and 1,282 button bucks (11%) . Bucks with fallen antlers and bucks with antlers less than 3 inches long accounted for 287 deer or 2% of the harvest.
During the nine days of gun hunting, 79,805 deer were captured. Additionally, young hunters harvested 7,634 deer during the two-day youngster shooting season. With about a month left to hunt with archery equipment, hunters in Ohio checked 186,426 deer in all seasons. Ohio’s archery season is open through February 6.
Deer hunting is taking place in all 88 counties and hunters in Ohio have purchased 394,059 deer licenses through Tuesday, January 11. Deer hunting hotspots are found primarily in the eastern regions including Ashtabula, Coshocton, Tuscarawas, Muskingum, Guernsey and Knox counties.
Ohio ranks fifth nationally in resident hunters and 11th in the number of jobs associated with hunting-related industries. Hunting generates more than $853 million in Ohio through the sale of equipment, fuel, food, lodging, and more, according to the National Shooting publication Hunting in America: An Economic Force for Conservation. Sports Foundations.