The numbers are in for the latest deer hunting season. The Ohio Deer Hunting Season for 2019-20, for archery started on September 28, 2019 and concluded on February 2, 2020, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. With this season’s end, North Royalton Chief of Police, Ken Bilinovich, reported the 2019-20 season’s update to the Council Safety Committee at their meeting on January 21.
The number of white tailed deer have been slowly, but steadily declining with the passage of ordinances for the hunting of white tailed deer several years ago, which allowed the bow hunting within the city borders. This season, a total of 122 deer were taken. The numbers have been decreasing over the past few years, with 144 deer taken last year and 193 taken the previous year. The number of hunting permits that were taken was slightly higher last year, with eighty five pulled, versus eighty three issued for last year’s season and ninety one deer hunting permits granted the year before that. The following is the breakdown of deer taken by hunting: Ward 1, 56, compared to 44 last year; Ward 2, 7, compared to 36; Ward 3, 14, compared to 15 last year; Ward 4, 8, compared to 8; Ward 5, 8, compared to 12 last year; Ward 6, 29, compared to 29, according to Bilinovich.
In addition to the deer that were hunted, there were deer killed by car collisions and that died from other causes. In 2017/18, there were deer that died due to a disease that spread, resulting in the death of a large number of the white tailed deer. According to the Ohio Department of Agriculture, “ confirmed cases of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) in both white-tailed deer and cattle in Ohio. The virus was diagnosed by the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s (ODA) Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (ADDL). The disease shows up about every five to seven years. The disease seems to dissipate after the frost. The numbers during that time seemed to be increased at that time, but last year, the numbers, according to the ODA, were reduced. In North Royalton, it is not known exactly how the deer were affected. “We don’t get them tested, so I can’t confirm, but we have had a few that probably died from that,” said North Royalton Senior Animal Control Officer, George Stuart. “It seems to surge during drought years.” The overall deer population in North Royalton is decreasing. “I would guess that the number of deer is down a little bit from last year,” said Stuart.
After Bilinovich gave his report, Ward 4 Councilman Jeremy Dietrich stated that he thinks the cost of the hunting permit should be reduced. “They are doing a favor for the city,” he noted, regarding the reduction of the deer population. Ward 5 Councilman Vince Weimer requested that Bilinovich give Council the cost of the program, so a discussion regarding the fee can take place. Currently, there is a registration fee of $150, as well as the cost of obtaining a archery proficiency certification. In addition, the homeowner/renter must carry an insurance policy indicating personal liability insurance coverage of at least $100,000.
Those interested in participating in the bow hunting of white tailed deer program for the 2020-21 season can apply to the city now through August 15. Those applying for a nuisance permit can do so now until the beginning of bow hunting deer season next year. For information about the North Royalton program, you can visit the city’s website at The Municipal Deer Control Permit Packet is located under the Important Information section.
Contributing Writer