Minnesota's 2002 firearms deer season was the fourth best on record. Hunters shot an estimated 197,168 deer, up from last year's total of 197, 063.
The number of licensed hunters was down just 4.5 percent. DNR officials were concerned that fears of chronic wasting disease would curtail license sales even more. The number of antlerless permits was up 28 percent this year and the DNR had hoped for a record harvest to trim a deer herd that is at or near record levels.
By region, the northwest had 69,084 (up 3 percent), the northeast 54,846 (up 9 percent), the central region 42,167 (down 5 percent), and the south region 31,071 (down 10 percent).
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