Updated Mon, Nov 26, 2012 5:02 pm
Southeast Ohioans participating in deer hunting season will need a new permit to go hunting this year.
The antlerless permits expired Sunday in all of Southeast Ohio, which means hunters must have either-sex deer permits for gun season.
This is the first time in the region that antlerless permits have expired before the opening of the gun season, which began on Monday.
Mike Tonkovich, a deer biologist for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, said the rules were changed to persuade hunters to stop procrastinating and harvest their game early.
"Harvesting deer early is better than later all else being equal. From a hunter's standpoint it makes for a more intense run. When you balance the ratio by removing antlerless deer before deer start breeding in late October or early November, those bucks are moving more, looking for more receptive does and that movement in turn means more excitement and a more entertaining hunt," he said.
Tonkovich also reminds people that kill a deer on their own property that they cannot call in for a check, but they can still do it online or take a trip to one of the license outlet locations listed on the ODNR website.
He said the goal of all deer season changes is to make the process simpler for all involved.