By Associated Press - Monday, March 19, 2018

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - The Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife says deer hunters took 13 percent more deer during last fall’s hunting seasons than the average of the previous three years.

Experts attribute the increase to mild weather the preceding two winters, which allowed more deer to survive. The state also issued more muzzleloader antlerless deer permits.

A report released Monday showed that hunters took a total of 15,984 deer during Vermont’s archery, youth, November rifle, and December muzzleloader deer seasons.

Deer Project Leader Nick Fortin says harvest numbers increased during the archery, youth and muzzleloader seasons, and the total harvest was the third highest since 2002.

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