As much as 10 percent of the deer herd may have been lost to EHD/blue tongue disease in the piedmont and coastal plain regions. Hunters collected about 12 percent fewer deer in North Carolina last fall than in the previous season, and biologists are expecting a similar low harvest this autumn. Conditions have been excellent this summer, however, with plenty of rain and browse, and last fall's abundant acorn crop should result in plenty of healthy bucks. Good public deer hunting areas include Roanoke River, Butner-Falls, Croatan, Thurmond Chatham, South Mountains and the Nantahala and Pisgah national forests. Contact: North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (919-733-7291; www.ncwildlife.org).