Ron Schoenberger of Ender’s Lakers Bait and Tackle and Angie West at Wauneta Crossroads both reported an increase in the number of deer checked in after the first weekend of deer season.
Schoenberger said Lakers Bait and Tackle checked in 240 deer as of Tuesday morning, up nearly 50 from last year.
He added that there have been a lot of kids who have checked in their first deer ever, and many of them had nice deer.
Overall, Schoenberger estimated 70 percent of the deer to be muley and, in general, a lot of “nice big ones.”
West said 11-first timers have checked in at Wauneta Crossroads. West felt like there has been a lot of doe checked in. Crossroads has also seen a lot of familiar out-of-state hunters — including ones from Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Missouri, California and Texas — contributing to the 215 deer checked in.
Crossroads will also award the hunter whose picture receives the most likes on Facebook. A select group of the biggest deer will also be chosen by West for a second Facebook contest.
West also pointed out there are raffle tickets for a rifle still available. Proceeds will go to Hunter Education classes. A bow safety course is expected to be offered in January.
Nebraska Game and Parks reports early checked deer numbers up 8 percent statewide at preliminary deer check-in sites compared to the 2018 opening weekend of Nebraska’s firearm season.
During the 2019 opening weekend of the November firearm season, Nov. 16-17, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s northeast district check stations recorded 17 percent more deer than last year. The number of checked deer was up 9 percent in the southeast, up 3 percent in the northwest and up 5 percent in the southwest district.
Game and Parks big game manager Luke Meduna said nice weather led to a lot of hunters in the field.
Meduna reminded hunters they won’t want to let their deer hang for as long in warm weather.
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