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March 14, 2017

Pa. officials: Deer hunting season was state's largest in 15 years

More than 330,000 deer were hunted

Deer hunters recorded more than 330,000 kills this season including the largest number of antlered deer since 2002, state officials said.

On Monday, the Pennsylvania Game Commission released the annual harvest report for the 2016-17 season, which concluded in January. The figures showed a six-percent increase in successful deer hunting compares to last season.

“This has been quite a year for Pennsylvania deer hunting,” said R. Matthew Hough, the commision's executive director. “Not only was there an increased deer harvest and a significantly higher buck harvest, I saw hundreds of photos from hunters who took their buck-of-a-lifetime this past season."

The commission estimated that 333,254 deer were hunted during the season, up from last year when 315,813 deer were recorded.

The uptick was primarily the result of a sharp increase in antlered deer hunted. Of the total number of deer taken, 183,794 were bucks, the most in 15 years. The figures also mark a nine-percent increase over last year when 137,580 bucks were hunted.

More than two-thirds of the harvest were recorded by firearm while bowhunters accounted for the rest.

The estimates are based on harvest reports submitted by successful hunters and 24,000 deer check by Game Commission personnel.