MASSACHUSETTS

Deer Forecast 2003

Outdoor Life Online Editor

The Bay State is rarely touted as the place to go deer hunting, but if you can deal with the ammunition purchasing and firearm transportation restrictions, it's a surprisingly good bet. Trophy deer numbers are increasing, as seen by the 2002-03 harvest. Over 30 percent of deer taken were 31/2 years old or older, according to MDFW Deer Project Leader Bill Woytek. The state's approximately 90,000 deer are found in higher concentrations in the eastern regions. The southwestern corner, especially deer management zone 3, is worth special attention-it has a deer density of about 20 per square mile. Look to the Quabbin Reservoir area for good genetics; the state-record typical whitetail was taken there last year. Contact: Massachusetts Department of Fisheries and Wildlife (617-626-1500; www.state.ma.us/dfwele).

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