MARQUETTE, MI-- Initial numbers indicate the number of deer coming through U.P. check stations is down a bit from the same time last year.
Department of Natural Resources wildlife biologist David Jentoft says on average, check stations are down about 14 percent from 2018. DNR spokesman John Pepin says a number of factors—such as snow depth, the day of the week of opening day, and temperatures—can affect comparisons between given years. When compared with the 10-year average, some deer check stations were up.
The Friday-through-Sunday figures indicate the Baraga station numbers are down 23 percent from 2018, but down only 16 percent compared to the 10-year average. The number of deer checked at the Marquette station is down 4 percent from last year, but up 24 percent compared with the 10-year average.
The DNR says the majority of animals being checked are bucks. Most are 2.5 years and older and are in good condition.
In the U.P., the number of deer licenses bought by residents since March 1 through Sunday totaled 65,750, compared to 66,256 over the same time period in 2018. The number of residents who bought deer hunting licenses in the 15 counties since March 1 totaled 41,706, compared to 42,748 last year.