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Deer Season Concludes with Youth Deer Hunting Day

From August 15th to December 31st, Lowcountry deer hunters have spent time in the woods scouting for that one massive buck. Some have been successful, while others have waited hours with nothing in sight. The last day for deer season in South Carolina was December 31st and for many this was the last thing they did before the start of the new year. Rules for deer hunting changed in 2017 and with a new tagging system, many hunters had to make adjustments to their hunting routines. According to Sergeant Godowns with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, “Like anything brand new there has been successes and minor hang ups with the new tagging system. Hunters have had no real complaints or just an all out dislike for the system. It really has run pretty smoothly.” The smooth transition according to Sgt. Godowns is due to the amount of information that SCDNR released to hunters prior to enacting the new laws. “There was a lot of information pushed out early and with plenty of time to let people ask questions. We held town meetings, ran newspaper articles, did television programs, and put everything on the internet. All officers were willing to talk and answer any questions people might have,” Sgt. Godowns said. As with anything new there is learning curve for both the SCDNR officers and hunters alike but according to Sgt. Godowns officers were able to use this deer season as a way to really educate hunters about the new laws. “Officers have used this year as a learning year and given people the benefit of the doubt while educating them on the proper ways of using tags. The tagging system definitely has helped keep track of the number of deer killed whether Bucks or Does,” Sgt. Godowns said. Now that deer season has officially concluded, SCDNR will be working on all of the numbers from the new tagging system which will be available to the public. According to Sgt. Godowns, the main problem that SCDNR officers saw this season were hunters who did not use the correct tags. “The biggest problem we have seen is people deciding to use personal tags or use the deer quota tags for properties. Deer quota tags are issued to a property and must be used for deer harvested on that property. A property can get deer quota tags for just Does or just Bucks or for both. When a property decides to sign up in the quota program those tags must be used and not the personal tags of the hunters,” Sgt. Godowns said. Overall the season was a success for many lowcountry hunters and the season was concluded with the Youth Deer Hunting day held on Saturday January 6th, 2018. According to the SCDNR website, Youth Day is a special opportunity for anyone under the age of 17, with the supervision of someone with a valid hunting license over the age of 21, to hunt on all private lands and select WMA lands. Youth licenses are waived for the day, and it was an opportunity for many youth hunters to spend time learning the sport on a day dedicated to only youth hunting. Special youth day deer tags were provided for this day.

Amye Stivender (218 Posts)