AUGUSTA, Maine (AP), Maine is reviewing its deer permits system in response to concerns that hunters may not be harvesting enough to properly manage the population.
Maine’s deer population is approximately 300,000. It has been growing steadily for many years. The state uses the fall hunting season as a way to control the animal population. This can lead to traffic accidents and spread Lyme disease.
The Bangor Daily News reported that the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife seeks ways to increase deer harvest. Permits for “any deer” allow hunters to harvest bucks or does. The basis of the permitting system is permits for “any other deer.”
One proposal would allow hunters to hunt deer without antlers.
Nathan Webb, Director of the State Wildlife Division, told Bangor Daily News that despite issuing many permits, the state has “kinda reached a plateau or threshold” and cannot harvest antlerless deer.
This year, more than 150,000 any deer permits were issued by the state. It was a record. Webb explained that hunters might harvest just one adult doe for every 10 any deer permits.
Nov. 1 marks the start of firearms season for deer.