As many New Jerseyans can tell, the ranks of deer haven’t thinned much in the past year. The annual “harvest “ -- the number of deer killed by hunters each year -- was the lowest in about two-and-a-half decades: 41,439 for the season spanning mid-2015 through the first part of 2016. A typical year sees between 50,000 and 60,000 deer fall prey to hunters.
The fall bow-hunting season is the most popular and productive, and this year was no different. There were 13,312 deer killed by bowhunters this past fall. Approximately 17,500 deer were killed by some sort of firearm last year, and the other two bow seasons took out about 10,000. The remaining deer were killed during youth deer-hunting season.