Delaware hunters harvested 14,742 deer during the 2016-17 hunting season, surpassing 2015-16’s record of 14,681 deer taken, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Division of Fish & Wildlife announced March 1.
This season marks the seventh time within the past 12 years the deer harvest has exceeded 14,000 since Delaware’s first modern-day deer season was held in 1954.
Sussex County had the highest harvest with 7,675 deer, followed by Kent County with 4,397 and New Castle County with 2,670.
With Sunday deer hunting allowed in the state for the first time, a total of 1,170 deer were harvested on the five Sundays open to deer hunting on private lands and Division of Fish & Wildlife public wildlife areas.
During the 2016-17 season, hunters harvested more does than bucks, with 51.3 percent does and 48.7 percent bucks. Antlerless deer — does, juvenile bucks without antlers known as button bucks, antlered bucks with antlers measuring less than three inches and bucks that had already shed both of their antlers when harvested — represented 67.9 percent of the total harvest.
In addition to the new statewide harvest record, several other deer records were set by hunters this past season:
— Kent County: 4,397 deer harvested.
— Antlered bucks harvested in a single season: 4,729.
— Total bucks harvested in a single season: 7,186.
For information, call 735-3600 or visit dnrec.delaware.gov/fw/Hunting/Pages/DeerInfo.aspx.