Record number of deer killed in Indiana in 2012

DNR: Hunters took advantage of relaxed regulations

INDIANAPOLIS - The Indiana Department of Natural Resources said Thursday that hunters in Indiana took advantage of changes in equipment regulations and extra hunting dates to kill a record 136,248 deer last year.

The previous record was 134,004 in 2010.

Division of Fish & Wildlife spokesman Mitch Marcus said the state made changes last year to make it easier to harvest antlerless deer.

Those changes included making crossbows legal for all licensed hunters during archery season; adding a special late antlerless season in designated counties; extending the urban zone season to run continuously from Sept. 15 to the end of January; and allowing youth hunters in the two-day youth season to take whatever the bonus antlerless quota was in the county where they hunted.

Archery season also was increased by seven days.

"We started down the path to strategically reduce the deer herd in order to balance the ecological, recreational, and economic needs of all Indiana citizens," Marcus said in a news release. "To meet that strategy, we initiated several regulation changes to make it easier to take antlerless deer. It appears the regulations may be working."

The highest deer harvest in a county was 3,506 in Switzerland County. 

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