DNR says 600,000 hunters hit the woods for gun deer season

Sunday was the last day for gun deer season, and Department of Natural Resources officials say hunters grabbed five to eight more animals this year, and 600,000 hunters hit the woods. They say this was one of the safest hunting seasons, with only five accidents reported, with all of the victims expected to be okay. Butchers are now busy processing all of the meat.

Dan Vogel and his family took advantage of the drive-thru service at Blau's Saukville Meats Sunday. Vogel was still smiling, after grabbing his first deer this year. "I literally looked out my kitchen window, and ran out to the garage, and said 'I'm going to go out and get one,' and boom," Vogel said. Vogel said he was looking forward to getting some venison sausage made Sunday at Blau's.

Mark Blau says Blau's is very, very busy right now with deer coming in and out of the store. "It's very hectic. It is too much at one time and very stressful, but we deal with it," Blau said. Blau says this was a good, but not great season for hunters. Blau says state management might be getting better, and the herd might be getting better, along with hunters getting a reprieve from the Earn A Buck program, which required hunters to kill an antlerless deer before bagging a buck. Governor Scott Walker signed a law in early November repealing the program.

The DNR says after the first weekend of gun deer season, more than 112,000 deer were harvested. The DNR reminds hunters that the 10-day muzzleloader hunting season starts Monday, followed by the four-day antlerless deer season.