P.D. Moloney and J.S. Flesch
Game Management Authority
The total estimated deer harvest in 2022 was 123,376 (95% confidence interval (CI) = 98,177-155,042), 49% above the average since 2009 (82,802) but similar to 2018 (121,567) and 2021 (118,874). The similarity in overall annual deer harvest compared to 2021 can be explained by an increase in the proportion of active hunters (39%) and efficiency (19% increase in deer harvested per hunting day) being counteracted by the overall number of hunting days decreasing by 12%. Active hunters are Game Licence holders endorsed to hunt deer who hunted at least once in 2022.
In 2022, 50% of Game Licence holders endorsed to hunt deer actively hunted, similar to the recorded average (48%). On average, active deer hunters harvested 4.9 deer over 8.6 days, which are both below average (5.7 deer and 11.1 days respectively).
The most commonly harvested species was Sambar Deer (with an estimated total harvest of 76,178, or 62% of the total deer harvest), followed by Fallow Deer (Dama dama) (41,180, or 33%) while 4% of the harvest was not clearly identified. These species percentages differed from previous years. Typically, Sambar Deer and Fallow Deer account for 77% and 18% of the deer harvest respectively and 2% of the harvest is not clearly identified.
In 2022 it is estimated that the total number of deer harvested using hounds was 12,428 (95% CI = 10,135-15,239) or 10% of the total deer harvest. The average annual deer harvest rate using hounds per active Game Licence holder endorsed to hunt Sambar Deer with hounds was 6.4 (95% CI = 4.9-8.3), which is higher than the general rate per active hunter (4.9). The efficiency of deer harvest using hounds (0.39 deer per hunting day per team member) is lower than the overall efficiency (0.57 deer per hunting day) in 2022. This apparent contradiction is explained by a larger number of hound hunting days per active hound hunter (16.6) compared to the general number of hunting days (8.6).