SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Deer hunters in West Virginia harvested 56,333 bucks during the two-week buck firearms season, according to Frank Jezioro, director of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.
The 2013 buck harvest was slightly higher than the 2012 harvest of 56,276. The top 10 counties were Jackson (1,914), Ritchie (1,909), Roane (1,878), Preston (1,753), Lewis (1,685), Hampshire (1,637), Braxton (1,623), Wood (1,599), Wetzel (1,534), and Greenbrier (1,529).
This year’s overall buck harvest is essentially the same as last year’s, but varied considerably by region. The largest percent increases occurred in the western counties of the state while the buck harvest in the mountain and northern panhandle counties decreased. Inclement weather, especially Tuesday, the second day of the season, may have impacted hunter participation and contributed to the decrease harvest in these counties.
The harvest was 27th among all recorded antlered buck firearm seasons. This year’s preliminary buck harvest remains 3 percent below the previous five-year average of 58,049.
Wildlife biologists and wildlife managers collected age-specific biological information at checking stations in 23 counties this year and will analyze data before making appropriate recommendations for next year’s deer seasons.
Some other county totals include Tucker (512), Berkeley (891), Grant (1,152), Hardy, (1,426), Jefferson (443), Mineral (1,414), Morgan (747) and Pendleton (1,174).