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Preliminary deer harvest numbers down 7% from last year

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - Wisconsin hunters shot seven percent fewer deer than a year ago in the nine-day gun season that ended last Sunday.  

The DNR released preliminary numbers Tuesday, showing that 226,582 deer were taken. That's down from about 244,000 last November. 15 percent fewer bucks were shot this year.  

The antlerless harvest was about the same as in 2012, even though quotas for does were reduced in the north to boost the deer population in that region.

Cold weather hampered the opening weekend, when most of the hunting takes place. It got down to 11-below in northwest Wisconsin on the first Sunday of the season.  

In a DNR survey, hunters said the weather the worst they had seen in the five years the agency has been asking about hunter trends.  

On Monday, the DNR reported a safer gun season than most, with 8 shooting-related incidents statewide. No hunters were shot to death, but at least two collapsed while in the woods.

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)