Deer harvest is up on youth weekend; herd healthy after mild winter

ADDISON COUNTY — Young hunters around Addison County enjoyed more success during Youth Hunting Weekend on Nov. 4 and 5 than in any youth weekend since 2012. They brought 110 deer they shot to one of the county’s weigh stations.
That total of 110 surpassed last year’s of 94, while the numbers from 2013 to 2015 ranged from 78 to 109.
The year 2012, when 124 young hunters brought down deer, stands as the local high-water mark since the Department of Fish and Wildlife founded the two-day youth weekend.
Results from this past archery season, which ran from Oct. 7 to Nov. 3, also finished ahead of those from the same period in 2016. Almost complete results from this past bow season — the Independent could not reach C&S Hunting Supplies in East Middlebury before deadline — showed 254 deer reported taken by archery compared to the 2016 season total of 206. Full bow results will be published at a later date.
The strong youth and bow results are encouraging as the Nov. 11 to 26 rifle season opens; the Independent plans to publish opening weekend rifle results this Thursday. The numbers for the overall deer hunt are running ahead of a banner 2016, when Addison County big game reporting stations handled more deer than in any year since 2005.
In that year Vermont Fish & Wildlife officials banned hunters from shooting spikehorn bucks in November’s rifle season, the most popular of the state’s deer seasons, in an effort to allow bucks to mature and thus give hunters more trophy targets.
Counting all of the 2016 deer seasons — including animals taken during the October archery season (206), Youth Hunting Weekend (94), rifle season (a record 573 since the 2005 rule change), and December’s combined archery and muzzleloader season (191) — hunters brought 1,064 deer to one of the county’s nine reporting stations.
   FOURTEEN-YEAR-OLD Tate Rheaume, son of Stacey and Ricky Rheaume of Salisbury, shot this 115-pound doe in Cornwall on the first day of Youth Hunting Weekend. This was the third year he’s got his deer.
Generally weigh station operators after the first two seasons this year reported good weights and a healthy herd, with some bucks taken topping 200 pounds during archery season.
“The hunters who are seeing deer were seeing healthy deer,” said Vermont Field Sports manager Greg Boglioli.
Boglioli speculated that two consecutive mild winters — this January’s average temperatures was 11 degrees above normal in Burlington, and February’s average came in 8.3 degrees warmer than typical — contributed to deer’s size and weight.
“The past two winters were fairly mild,” he said. “The deer got larger.”
Among the most impressive specimens weighed over Youth Hunting Weekend were two bucks taken in Panton and handled by Rack and Reel in New Haven: Jenna Paquin shot a 196-pound, 7-point buck, and Eagan Sullivan brought down a 190-pound, 7-pointer.
The following hunters shot deer during Youth Hunting Weekend and had them weighed at an Addison County reporting station. Listings are by hunter, town of kill, and animal details, including weight of deer in pounds, antler points if relevant, and gender.
Timothy Whitney, Cornwall, 113-pound doe; John Coleman, Shoreham, 136 doe; Dalton Rheaume, Salisbury, 82 doe; Mason Kaufmann, Weybridge, 57 fawn; Isaac Whitney, Salisbury, 107 doe; Diana Pratt-Raymond, Salisbury, 164 pound-6 point buck; Hannah Cameron, New Haven, 125-4 buck; Caleb Whitney, 63 fawn; Charlie Stone, New Haven, 130 doe; Remington Coburn, 180-2 buck; Morgan Galipeau, 108 doe; and Adin Girard, Cornwall, 99 doe.
Also, Jack Chaput, Charlotte, 112 doe; Thatcher Trudeau, Salisbury, 127 doe; Tate Rheaume, Cornwall, 115 doe; Sawyer Pierpont, Leicester, 111-4 buck; Cooper Laroche, Shoreham, 91 doe; Nolan Warner, Middlebury, 89 doe; Hunter Warner, Middlebury, 125-3 buck; Luke Nuceder, Salisbury, 79 doe; Sydney Provencher, Middlebury, 119-2 buck; Kaitlyn Brown, Salisbury, 98 doe; and Zakery Hoisington, Weybridge, 121-6 buck.
Jenna Paquin, Panton, 196-7 buck; Eagan Sullivan, Panton, 190-7, buck; Grace Smith, Ferrisburgh, 175-8 buck; William Murphy, Charlotte, 164-6 buck; Eli Brace, Bridport, 153-6 buck; Tallon Real, New Haven, 140 doe; Austin Rule, Monkton, 135-8 buck; Isaac Preston, Ferrisburgh, 134 doe; Savannah Thomann, Panton, 134-3 buck; Alexis Boise, Ferrisburgh, 130 doe; Ethan Gebo, Bethel, 127-5 buck; Christina Miller, Ferrisburgh, 126-3 buck; Nathan Lavoie, Ferrisburgh, 125 doe; Trevor Hallock, Salisbury, 123-6 buck; and Kenneth Sullivan, Panton, 123-2 buck.
Also, Sawyer Leonard, Ferrisburgh, 123-2 buck; Hunter Meacham, Ferrisburgh, 123-2 buck; Brooklyn Ryersbach, Moretown, 121-5 buck; Carter Harvey, Charlotte, 119-4 buck; Kyle Clark, Ferrisburgh, 118-4 buck; Alex Barrows, 112-4 buck; Madison Perkins, Addison, 111 doe; Tyler Linehan, Monkton, 110 doe; Trent Paquette, Bristol, 108 doe; William Forbes, Middlebury, 96-4 buck; Mattison Tierney, Lincoln, 92 doe; Dylan Stearns, Ferrisburgh, 79 doe; Christopher Bapp, New Haven, 71 fawn; Colby Galipeau, Shelburne, 70 fawn; Timothy Ashley, Ferrisburgh, 69 fawn; and Aiden Ennis, 58 fawn.
Laurel Boutwell, Poultney, 110 doe; Tanner Burns, Shoreham, 127-2 buck; Joe Buxton, Orwell, 138-4 buck; Mike Dame, Shoreham, 150 doe; Jacob Kemp, Orwell, 102-2, buck; Trey Lee, Orwell, 127-6, buck; Kyle Davies, West Haven, 116 doe; Morgan Bertrand, Orwell, 147-2, buck; Sawyer Cadoret, Shoreham, 117-2, buck; Brady Quenneville, Whiting, 120 doe; Samuel Young, Orwell, 119-2, buck; Nicholas Madison, Shoreham, 157-4, buck; Nicholas Gosselin, Orwell, 113 doe; Charles Eddy, Orwell, 100-doe; and Nathaniel Young, Orwell, 119 doe.
Also, Lilian Russell, Orwell, 122-2, buck; Asa Young, Orwell, 128-4, buck; Cole Warren, Shoreham, 132-4, buck; Tristan Stearns, Shoreham, 107 doe; John Lowell, Orwell, 136-6, buck; Britney Hadvab, Orwell, 132-8, buck; Aubrey Ramey, Castleton, 160-7, buck; Olivia Almeida, Orwell, 93 doe; Wyatt Stearns, Shoreham, 115 doe; Joseph Connor, Shoreham, 137-2, buck; Jack Almeida,, Orwell, 168-8, buck; Nicholas Austin-Neil, Cornwall, 130 doe; Lily Dame, Shoreham, 71 doe; Hunter Hall, Orwell, 137-3 buck; and Carter Paquette, Shoreham, 106 doe.
Owen Bromley, Starksboro, 65-pound male.
Chase Atkins, Lincoln, 126 spikehorn buck; Alex Laberge, Ripton, 136-8 buck; Evan Russell, Bolton, 65 male; Gavin McNulty, Shoreham, 130-3 buck; Madison Spafford, Shrewsbury, 98 spikehorn buck; Taylor Tanner, New Haven, 66 fawn; and Kasey Cavoretto, Lincoln, 111 spikehorn.
Connor Pouliot, New Haven, 102 doe; Samuel Warren, Bridport, 130 spikehorn.
Tucker Davis, New Haven, 79 doe; Dylan Case, New Haven, 112 doe; McKenzie Greiner, Addison, 51 fawn; Blake Bowen, Middlebury, 116-5 buck; Katie St. Amour, Lincoln, 135 doe; Matthew Fitzsimmons, New Haven, 79 doe; Kendall Carter, New Haven, 109 spikehorn; Charlotte Layn, Monkton, 108 spikehorn; Tucker Porter, Starksboro, 106-3 buck; Connor Contois, Hinesburg, 146-5 buck; Ryan Lathrop, Bristol, 119 doe; Chloe Briggs, New Haven, 112 doe; Colby Lathrop, Lincoln, 130-8, buck; Emily LaRock, Hinesburg, 142 doe; Emma Fay, Bristol, 98 doe; and Isak Irish, New Haven, 50 fawn. 

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