2022 Deer Hunting Numbers Out; New York Sees Surprising Increase
After years of decline, hunters might be impressed with the results from this past deer season.
The Department of Environmental Conservation has finally released their estimates from the 2022 Deer Hunting season in New York State. Where hunters would normally see numbers go down, it was actually the opposite across the board.
According to the DEC, New York hunters harvested an estimated 231,961 deer last season. That's a 10% increase overall from last year. Commissioner Basil Seggos says higher numbers are likely because people finally took advantage the new hunting opportunities that were introduced in 2021.
Increased hunter success combined with recovering deer populations contributed to an overall increase in total deer harvest.
Dissecting the numbers from 2022-23, they included an estimated take of 116,425 antlered bucks and 115,536 antlerless deer. That translates to a 5% increase in antlered buck, with a 15% increase in the other.
The Hudson Valley and shores of Lake Ontario were hit heavily by Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHD) in 2020 and 2021. This lead to a major decrease in harvest numbers statewide. 2022's estimates indicate deer populations are now slowly recovering in those areas.
Other Fun Facts
The DEC included an additional set of notable numbers taken from their 2022 estimates...
- 64% - portion of the adult buck harvest that was 2.5 years or older statewide, up from 45 percent a decade ago, and 30 percent in the 1990s.
- 46.4% - portion of successful deer hunters that reported harvest as required by law. This is below the five-year average of 49.3 percent.
- 13,568 - number of hunter-harvested deer checked by DEC staff in 2022 to determine hunter reporting rate and collect biological data
- (e.g., age, sex, antler characteristics).
- 2,727 - deer tested for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in 2022-23; none tested positive.
- DEC has tested 63,012 deer for CWD since 2002.