JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri's 2017-2018 deer-hunting season ended Jan. 15 with the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reporting a preliminary total harvest of 283,940 deer. Top counties for the overall season were Howell with 6,182 deer harvested, Franklin with 5,957, and Texas with 5,619. Of the 283,940 deer harvested, 135,891 were antlered bucks, 30,538 were button bucks, and 117,511 were does. Hunters harvested 263,834 deer during the 2016-2017 deer hunting season.
Deer hunting ended with the close of the archery season. Preliminary data from MDC showed that hunters checked 51,722 deer during the archery season. Top counties for the archery season were Jefferson with 1,169 deer harvested, St. Louis with 1,021, and Franklin with 1,000. Of the 51,722 deer harvested, 21,162 were antlered bucks, 5,319 were button bucks, and 25,241 were does. Hunters checked 47,552 deer during the 2016-2017 archery season.
Fall archery turkey hunting also ended Jan. 15. Preliminary data from MDC showed 2,426 turkeys harvested. Top counties for the archery turkey season were Phelps with 73 birds harvested, Texas with 63, and Laclede with 58. For the previous year, hunters harvested 2,304 turkeys.
The past season was the second in which MDC began allowing crossbows as a legal method during the deer and turkey archery season. Of the 51,722 deer harvested under archery methods, 19,691 were with crossbows. Of the 2,426 turkeys harvested under archery methods, 1,113 were with crossbows. For the first season that included crossbows (2016-2017), of the 47,552 deer harvested under archery methods, 14,336 were with crossbows, and of the 2,304 turkeys harvested under archery methods, 853 were with crossbows.
Get more deer and turkey harvest data for the current season at short.mdc.mo.gov/Z3g. Get deer harvest data for past seasons at short.mdc.mo.gov/Z3M. Get turkey harvest data for past seasons at short.mdc.mo.gov/Z3Y.
MDC reported five firearms-related hunting incidents during the fall deer and turkey hunting seasons. All were non-fatal. Three involved self-inflicted wounds. Two involved one hunter shooting another.
Conservation makes Missouri a great place to hunt deer and turkey. For more information, go online to https://huntfish.mdc.mo.gov/.