White-tailed harvest was good one for recent firearm season

With another firearm deer season in the books, preliminary numbers show the total number of white-tailed deer coming into Upper Peninsula check stations to be up 10 to 15 percent from 2017.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources reported the deer numbers were similar to the 10-year average, and although individual stations varied, all saw an increase from the 2017 season.

The Marquette station, located along U.S. 41 in Harvey, had a 9 percent increase in checked deer and a 2 percent uptick in the number of bucks checked.

At the Baraga station, the increases were 4 percent and 5 percent in total deer and bucks checked, respectively.

Escanaba saw a 10 percent increase in checked deer and an 11 percent increase in checked bucks.

There was a 21 percent overall increase in deer checked at Newberry and an 18 percent increase in bucks checked at that location.

At Sault Ste. Marie, 3 percent more deer and 3 percent more bucks were checked than in 2017.

Crystal Falls had the largest increases: 88 percent in total deer and 82 percent in bucks.

Escanaba checked the most deer this season, the DNR said. However, Crystal Falls’ big increase possibly was due to public awareness about chronic wasting disease, with sampling contributing to the increased number of deer coming in to some stations.

With the firearm deer season being a massive contributor to the local economy, we are very pleased to see the numbers going in a positive direction, especially after the particularly brutal winter that U.P. deer faced only a handful of years ago. While some of us may not have been able to bag that elusive buck this year, it’s great to hear that many of our fellow Yoopers had success.