The Virginia 2015-16 Deer Harvest DataReleased

Posted by Bruce Carroll on February 25, 2016 in Uncategorized, State News ; Virginia

Deer Harvest Data Announced for 2015-16

The Virginia deer harvests reflected an increase from last year  Wildlife biologists with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF) have compiled the preliminary figures for the 2015-16 fall/winter hunting season.

Virginia 2015-2016 Deer Harvest Summary
During the 2015-16 deer hunting season, hunters killed 209,197 deer in Virginia. This total included 103,310 antlered bucks, 15,000 button bucks, and 90,887 does (43%).

The youth deer hunting day in September, which was extended to the entire weekend in 2015, resulted in a kill of 3,076 deer. Archers, not including crossbow hunters, killed 15,078 deer, comprising 7% of the total deer kill. Crossbows accounted for 11,719 deer or 6% of the total deer kill. Muzzleloader hunters killed 42,517 deer or 20% of the total deer kill. Approximately 167,700 deer (80%) were checked using the Department’s telephone and Internet checking systems.   Annual deer kill totals by county dating back to 1947, including the county specific 2015 deer kill totals, can be found at the Agency’s website.

Stable or declining deer kill trends over the past decade in Virginia were expected, but the ups and downs in recent years’ deer kill totals were in some part attributable to mast conditions and/or Hemorrhagic Disease outbreaks. The Department’s primary deer management effort over the past decade was to increase the female deer kill over much of the state, especially on private lands, to meet the deer population objectives of stabilizing or reducing deer populations found in the Department’s deer management plan. The Department’s deer management staff anticipated that these high and sustained female deer kill levels would eventually lead to a decrease in the statewide deer herd and stable to declining total deer kill numbers experienced over the past decade.

Persons interested in more information on Virginia’s deer management program can read the Department’s deer management plan.

Data presented in this summary are preliminary and do not include deer taken during the late urban archery or special late antlerless-only deer seasons. Data also do not include deer killed on out-of-season kill permits or those deer hit and killed by vehicles.


For more information on bear, deer, and turkey, refer to the following:
Virginia’s White-tailed Deer Management Plan

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