During the 2000 deer season 186,564 deer were reported killed by hunters in Virginia. This total included 94,781 antlered males, 18,537 male fawns, 70,115 females (38.2 percent) and 3,131 deer of undocumented sex. The 2000 harvest represents a less than 2 percent decrease over the 190,043 checked in 1999.
Archers harvested 17,154 deer. The 2000 archery harvest was up over 11 percent from the 15,370 deer taken by archers in 1999. Archery constituted 9 percent of the total deer kill.
Muzzleloader hunters harvested 46,388 deer. The 2000 muzzleloader harvest was up 14 percent from the 40,638 deer taken by muzzleloaders in 1999. Muzzleloading comprised 25 percent of the total deer kill.
White-tailed deer management in Virginia is based on the fact that herd density and health are best controlled by regulating antlerless deer harvest levels. Deer harvest objectives and regulations are set on a county basis and are evaluated and amended every other year on odd years. Over the vast majority of the Commonwealth of Virginia, current deer management objectives call for the deer herd(s) to be stabilized at their current level. Liberal either-sex deer hunting regulations and bag limits enacted during the late 1980’s and 1990’s were designed to stabilize and/or reduce the deer herd over much of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Stable antlered male harvest levels and trends over the past decade appear to indicate that deer regulations/seasons have been successful in controlling herd growth. Data presented in this summary is preliminary.
Top 10 counties:
Loudoun 6,770 Loudoun 6,683
Bedford 5,397 Bedfor 5,432
Southampton 5,470 Southampton 5,306
Fauquier 4,582 Fauquier 5,078
Franklin 3,984 Franklin 3,673
Albemarle 3,984 Shenandoah 3,751