Firearm buck season kills up 18% in West Virginia

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SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The number of antlered white-tailed deer killed in West Virginia during the two-week firearms season increased 18% compared to a year ago, wildlife officials said.

Hunters killed 49,662 deer from Nov. 21 through Dec. 4, the Division of Natural Resource said in a news release. During last year’s firearms season, 42,143 bucks were killed.

The most deer were killed in Greenbrier, Preston, Randolph and Ritchie counties.

Paul Johansen, chief of the DNR’s Wildlife Resources section, said mast conditions and weather favored hunters this year.

The archery and crossbow deer hunting seasons continue through Dec. 31. Hunting opportunities for antlerless deer also will occur later this month.