Bowhunting Season Preview

Jarrod E. Stephens

The Ashland Beacon


   The swift passing of time never ceases to amaze me. The pages on the calendar have turned with blistering speed this year and now we are creeping up on September.

   Every deer hunter knows that September gives them the first opportunity to pursue the bucks that they’ve scoped out for the past several months. Bow season begins on Saturday, September 1 and continues through January 21, 2019 statewide.

   If you’ve visited the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife website or read the fall hunting manual, then you’ve no doubt seen the messages about the pending legislation concerning our deer season. That prompted me to contact Gabe Jenkins, Deer & Elk Program Coordinator for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources to find out if there would be any sweeping changes for our region. 

   “For Greenup, Carter and Boyd counties not much has been proposed to change. The major things that might affect these counties are permit related,” Jenkins said.

   He went on to say that there is a push to modify the statewide permit bag limit but all proposals are pending final legislative approval. The decisions will be made before the modern gun season.

   No changes have been made in the type of archery equipment that may be used. Long bows, recurves and compound bows may be used. Of course, hunters with a medical exemption and hunters over 65 years old may use a crossbow during the entire bow season as well.

   Last year’s harvest was quite strong with a total of 19,141 harvests. Based upon the current statewide deer population the prospected harvests for this season will be strong.

   There has certainly been no shortage of water this summer, so, the necessity of hunting near a water source may not be necessary at all since nearly every stream and puddle has stayed full. Focusing on tender forage and white oak flats where nuts are hitting the ground will improve your odds for success.

   Don’t forget bowhunters, if you do hunt during the modern gun season that you are required to wear hunter’s orange for safety reasons. It’s time to take those final shots at your target and get ready for opening morning when you can finally place your sights on your 2018 harvest. Take a kid with you the next time you go into the woods.