Deer season starts Saturday, November 6th, and despite the rough winter weather in February, wildlife managers say the fall season is looking good for hunters.

When we were cooped up in the house in February worried about freezing pipes and losing electricity to rolling blackouts, deer and other wildlife in East Texas were trying to figure out how in the heck to survive.  Well, they did, and wildlife managers say despite a ruthless freeze that killed shrubs, trees, and some animals, deer were resilient for the most part.  Texas Parks and Wildlife said hunters should expect a “fantastic season with better than average antler quality”. Late spring rains helped produce early plants that deer could feast on, and that's a good thing for hunters.

Here are the rules for hunters, according to Texas Parks and Wildlife.

--  Bag Limit:  4 deer, no more than 2 bucks, and no more than 2 antlerless, all seasons combined.

--  Antler Restrictions:  The bag limit is two legal bucks, but only one may have an inside spread of 13 inches or greater. A legal buck deer is defined as a buck deer with at least one unbranched antler, OR an inside spread of 13 inches or greater. 

--  Antlerless Deer:  Antlerless deer may be taken by hunting license tag during archery, muzzleloader, and youth-only seasons, except on properties where antlerless MLDP tags have been issued then take is by MLDP tag only. 

For more information on bag limits and tagging, see the Texas Parks and Wildlife website HERE.

Smith County (and all of East Texas) is in the North Zone and the season runs from November 6th through January 2nd.

The early youth-only season is this weekend, October 30th and 31st, and the late youth-only season runs January 3rd through 16th.

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