Deer harvest in Carlton County down from last yearThis year’s deer harvest in and around Cloquet has recorded lower numbers overall, and the newly added in-city bow hunt has met with only minimal success.
By: Wendy Johnson, Pine Journal
This year’s deer harvest in and around Cloquet has recorded lower numbers overall, and the newly added in-city bow hunt has met with only minimal success.
According to figures recorded by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, some 14,183 deer were harvested in the Cloquet area during the first 10 days of the 2008 firearms season, a number greater than anywhere else in the northeast region of Minnesota. Thus far in the 2009 season, however, only 12,977 deer have been harvested, down 9 percent from last year.
The downward trend reflects the numbers recorded for the rest of the region as well, with the overall take for the northeast region down 19 percent, according to registration figures from the Department of Natural Resources.
The figures reflect numbers recorded through the second Monday of the season.
The largest percentage decrease was in the International Falls area, where the harvest was down 38 percent, from 3,569 to 2,214.
The Grand Rapids area was down 26 percent; Tower, down 24 percent; Two Harbors, down 14 percent; Brainerd, down 24 percent; Aitkin, down 11 percent; and Cloquet, down 9 percent.
Last year’s harvest was down about 20 percent from 2007 across the region.
This fall’s adult buck harvest is down 5 percent from last fall, and the antlerless deer harvest is down 33 percent. Far fewer antlerless permits were available to hunters this fall, which accounts for much of the decrease in the antlerless harvest.
Overall, 40,235 deer have been taken in the region this fall, compared to 49,801 last fall.
Through Monday, the state had sold 437,157 firearms deer licenses, down from 444,142 at the same time last year. But this year’s total license sales through Monday were higher than for any other year dating back to 2000.
In a related matter, Cloquet’s first-ever in-city bow hunt this fall has yielded lower-than-expected numbers, according to Terry Hill, deputy police chief.
Since the start of the bow season on Sept. 19, Hill said only five bow hunters have applied for special permits to hunt deer in specified areas within the city limits. Among those five, only two have taken deer thus far, including one doe and one buck, and Hill said those were taken within the first two weeks of the season.
The Duluth News Tribune contributed to this story.