DEER HUNTERS took to the woods in Ohio Monday as gun-season commenced in the Buckeye State.
It is a hallowed tradition hunters long for all year. Hunters are being served up an additional 30 minutes of hunting each day. Hunters were already allowed to hunt deer 30 minutes before sunrise, and this year an additional 30 minutes has been added after sunset for gun seasons.
Deer-gun season is open through Sunday.
"We are eager to increase opportunities for Ohio's sportsmen and women," said Ohio Department of Natural Resources Director James Zehringer. "Ohio is a top 10 whitetail hunting destination, and the extra half-hour after sunset will give hunters more opportunities to bag a deer."
To say deer hunting is a popular activity in Ohio is understating the case. The ODNR Division of Wildlife expects 80,000-90,000 deer will be harvested this week.
Nearly a half-million hunters will likely be participating in this week's deer hunt. In 2012, hunters in Ohio checked 86,964 deer during the weeklong deer-gun season.
With that many gun-toting individuals stalking deer, safety becomes paramount. Much precaution must be taken, such as wearing required hunter orange clothing, using a safety harness while in a tree stand and safe handling of firearms.
Hunters in their zeal still must abide by rules and regulations.
Deer bag limits are now determined by county. The statewide bag limit is nine deer, but a hunter cannot exceed an individual county bag limit.
Hunters may harvest only one antlered deer, regardless of hunting method or season. A valid deer permit is required in addition to a valid Ohio hunting license. Hunters must purchase an additional deer permit to hunt more than one deer.
A new tagging procedure administered by the ODNR Division of Wildlife requires hunters to make their own game tag to attach to a deer. Game tags can be made of any material (cardboard, plastic, paper, etc.) as long as it contains the hunter's name, date, time and county of kill.
Ohio ranks fifth nationally in resident hunters and 11th in the number of jobs associated with hunting-related industries.
Hunting has a more than $853 million economic impact in Ohio through the sale of equipment, fuel, food and lodging.
Deer hunting in Ohio is both entertaining and big business. We urge all hunters to exercise the utmost in caution while following state rules.