Minnesota hunters harvested 184,649 deer during the 2012 season, down 4 percent from 2011, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
The decline reflects the fact that hunters had fewer chances to harvest antlerless deer because the 2012 season was designed to help stabilize and increase populations, said Leslie McInenly, DNR big game program leader. “We expected the reduction,” she said.
Firearms hunters harvested 155,599 deer while archery and muzzleloader hunters harvested 21,556 and 7,494 deer, respectively. The statewide archery harvest was up 5 percent, muzzleloader harvest increased 1 percent and firearm harvest was down 5 percent from last year.