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'Buck waiting' order of the day as hunt opens

Sports reporter

A week ago these does were showing their faces while in the brush above some pretty good sized bucks were hiding out. Many hunters who went out for the opener said they had seen small bucks over the weekend, but are waiting for something better to come along.

The general buck deer hunt kicked off this past Saturday and the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources says that hunting success was mixed throughout the southeastern region.

According to DWR public information officer, Brent Stettler hunters in the local region reported enjoying the weekend weather and many chose to wait for the chance to bag a big buck.

"We had several hunters tell our biologists and conservation officers that they saw several small bucks, but because the weather was so nice, they opted to wait on harvesting a larger buck," Stettler explained.

The DWR reports that in the southeastern region, most hunters who have tagged their deer have harvested yearlings however, some bagged big bucks.

"Some hunters have reported experiencing the best hunt in years and others say it's been terrible," explained Stettler. "Most of the success has come from hunters being in the right location and having a little bit of luck."

Deer hunting has had its rise and fall over the years. The most hunters who ever went out into the field was in 1984 when over 200,000 permits were issued. The most deer ever taken was in 1961 when over 130,000 who went out bagged an animal.

In the last 20 years hunt numbers have been greatly mixed. A hard winter and some disease problems in the mid-1980's almost destroyed deer hunting in the state. Today officials say, herds on the rise again.

The general buck deer hunt will run through Wednesday, October 26 for the southeastern Utah region. With good weather in the forecast, local hunters look to enjoy this year's hunting season to the extreme.

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