Deer hunt primerHere are some facts about deer and deer hunting in Minnesota from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Here are some facts about deer and deer hunting in Minnesota from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources:
- Adult female white-tailed deer weigh about 145 pounds, males about 170 pounds.
- The biggest white-tailed deer ever recorded was a 500-pound Minnesota buck.
- A whitetail’s home range is about one square mile.
- Minnesota’s deer population is about 1 million deer. Texas is No. 1 with 4.7 million deer
- Last year, 32 percent of Minnesota firearms hunters harvested a deer. About 49 percent were antlered bucks.
- 70 percent of Minnesota’s firearms deer harvest typically occurs during the first three or four days of the season.
- The average hunter spends five days afield during Minnesota’s firearms deer season.
- Last year’s total deer harvest was 195,000.
- Minnesota has harvested an average of 241,000 deer over the last five years. Wisconsin is No. 1 with an average harvest of almost 450,000.
- The largest typical whitetail buck ever taken in Minnesota had a Boone & Crockett score of 202; shot by John Breen in 1918 near Funkley.
- Minnesota’s No. 1 nontypical whitetail buck had 43 points; shot by 17-year-old Mitch Vakoch in 1974. A deer recently taken on the Camp Ripley archery hunt may exceed the record.
- In total, more than 800,000 deer hunting licenses and permits (all types) were sold in 2009.
- 98 percent of deer licenses are sold to Minnesota residents.
- The DNR Information Center remained open two hours later on the day before last year’s deer opener to answer more than 2,000 telephone inquiries, most of them related to the firearms opener.
Deer hunt economics
- 475,000 deer hunters in Minnesota.
- Retail sales – $260 million.
- Overall economic impact – $458 million.
- Salaries, wages, business owner income – $151 million.
- State and local tax revenue – $33 million.
- Number of directly supported jobs – 5,300.
- Economic impact is greatest in rural Minnesota.
Here are the top 10 violations among Minnesota hunters, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources:
- License not in possession
- Transporting an uncased/loaded firearm
- No license
- Hunting over bait
- Unplugged shotgun
- No blaze orange
- Untagged deer
- Failure to have certification on license
- Failure to validate (register) deer
- The season: Nov. 6 to 21 in 100 Series areas (Northeastern Minnesota)
- Hunting hours: One-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset
- The outlook: Firearms hunters in Northeastern Minnesota can expect a season similar to last year, according to DNR officials.
- Get a license: Licenses are available from license agents, by telephone to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources at (888) 665-4236 and online at www.mndnr.gov. Regular firearms deer licenses cost $26. A youth firearms license (ages 12-17) is $13.
- New registration options: Hunters may now register deer by telephone or over the Internet, as well as at walk-in big-game registration stations as in the past. To register by phone, call (888) 706-6367. (The number will be printed on your deer license.) To register by Internet, go to mndnr.gov/hunting. In each case, you’ll be given a confirmation number, which must be recorded on the license.
- Boundary changes: Boundaries of some deer permit areas have changed. Make sure you check your hunting area before buying your license.
Know the baiting ban
- “Bait or feed” is grain, fruit, vegetables, nuts, hay, or other food that is capable of attracting or enticing deer and that has been placed by a person.
- Hunters are not allowed to use or hunt over bait or feed or hunt in the vicinity of bait or feed if the hunter knows about or has reason to know about the placement of the bait or feed.
- A person otherwise in compliance with this section who is hunting on private or public property that is adjacent to the property where bait or feed is present is not in violation if the person has not participated in, been involved with, or agreed to baiting or feeding wildlife on the adjacent property.
- An area is considered baited for 10 days after complete removal of the bait or feed.
- Liquid scents, salt and minerals are not considered bait or feed.
- This restriction does not apply to foods that have not been placed by a person and that are resulting from normal, or accepted farming, forest management, wildlife food plantings, orchard management or similar land management activities.
ATV rules for big game hunters and trappers allow cross-country travel off roads and trails in state forests classified as “limited,” and off roads, trails, and access routes in state forests classified as “managed” under the following conditions:
- To retrieve big game (September through December).
- To hunt for big game and construct stands (October through December).
- To trap during the open season
- To trap for minnows under certain conditions
- To qualify for the big game hunter/trapper exception, the ATV user must have a valid hunting, trapping, or commercial trapping license in possession, and the ATV used must weigh less than 1,000 pounds.
However, the big game hunter/trapper exceptions do not apply to trails in state forests posted as closed, said Randy Hanzal, Department of Natural Resources conservation officer in Duluth. A trail posted as closed may not be used to retrieve big game or for other purposes listed above.