Jefferson County, PA – The snowy weather seems to have kept hunters from harvesting as many deer for the first day of buck season on Monday.

Initial numbers show that fewer deer were brought in this year than in the last few years.

We still have a while until the season ends, but game officials don’t expect the numbers to get much better throughout the week.

Most hunters have already taken their vacation on Monday for the first day, so if they didn’t get a buck then they’ll likely have to wait until the weekend.

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Until this Friday, hunters are allowed to use regular firearms and can only hunt deer with antlers.

Then on Saturday, you can hunt both bucks and antlerless deer, as long as you have the right licenses, until the end of the season on Dec. 8.

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Be especially careful driving during this time. Deer are going to be on the move during hunting season, so watch the sides of the road for animals that might jump in front of your vehicle.

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If you’re a hunter but don’t particularly need that venison, consider donating it to a hungry family. Pennsylvania’s Hunters Sharing the Harvest program makes it easy to do. Last season, the program got a record-breaking donation of 2,947 deer, which means near 600,000 servings of venison. The food is distributed throughout the state to food banks, soup kitchens, and pantries.

If you’d like to donate your deer, just drop it off at any participating meat processor. You can even keep some of the venison for yourself if you’d like to donate just part of your deer.

Learn more and find more locations.

Clearfield County –

  • Jason Monn’s Buck Stop Deer Processing in Philipsburg
    • Jason Monn
      2689 Port Matilda Hwy
      Philipsburg, PA 16866
      814-280-1359

Jefferson County –

  • Alderton’s Meat Market Deer Processing in Brookville
    • Randy Alderton
      4118 US Rt 322
      Brookville, PA 15825
      814-849-6328
  • Moon’s Meats and Deer Processing in Corsica
    • Jim VanSteenberg
      9427 Mt.Pleasant Rd.
      Corsica, PA 15829
      814-856-2489
  • Villella Meal and Deer Processing in Punxsutawney
    • Pat Villella
      797 Graffius Ave.
      Punxsutawney, PA 15707
      814-952-2112

Clarion County –

  • PJ’s Country Market in Fryburg
    • Peter Ackermann
      19633 Rt 208
      Fryburg, PA 16326
      814-354-2804

Elk County –

  • Pete’s Meats Deer Processing in Ridgway
    • Peter Burns
      28235 Lake City Rd.
      Ridgway, PA 15853
      814-771-7678
  • Smoke House Deer Processing in St. Marys
    • Smoke House DP
      Joe Sarnoski
      375 W. Theresia Rd.
      St. Marys, PA 15857
      814-781-3946

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Hunters Sharing The Harvest (HSH) is Pennsylvania’s registered 501c3 nonprofit venison donation program for hunters who share their extra venison via a statewide network of participating butchers to Food Banks across Pennsylvania. HSH participating butchers are paid for their services through sponsor-supported donations. They help to coordinate the meat deliveries to the local food banks. In turn, the food banks redistribute the venison to more than 5,000 local food assistance provider organizations such as food pantries, missions, homeless shelters, hunger-relief organizations and churches that play a vital role in helping to fill the gaps for families and individuals at risk of hunger; HSH has distributed 1.2 million pounds of donated venison since 1991.

For more information on Hunters Sharing the Harvest, visit www.sharedeer.org. For more information on the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, visit www.agriculture.pa.gov.