2016-10-27 / Outdoors

More hunters heading to island

Elbow room may come at a premium on the Mishe-Mokwa on Saturday.

Phil Akers, chief ranger at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, said on Tuesday that hunters have acquired 86 permits for this year’s week-long hunt on North Manitou Island. Last year, 49 sportsmen made the trip after 61 total permits were purchased.

“Quite a few of them return year after year,” said Akers, who spent a handful of days on the island in 2015.

The ferry will drop hunters off Saturday morning and pick them up one week later on Nov. 5. Last year, the boat returned to Leland at 11:19 a.m.

Hunters harvested 32 deer during their week-long stay last year, the most since 1998 when 52 deer were taken. Twenty-two deer were taken in 2014.

Among the deer taken in 2015 were an 11-point, a 10-point, a 9-point, a handful of 8-points and 11 does.

Akers was asked how the North Manitou Island deer herd is looking.

“We’ll find out next week,” he said.

Prior to the boatload of bucks harvested in 2015, only 138 deer had been taken on the island since 2000.

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