If you’re a hunter and you’re seeing fewer deer than normal, you aren’t alone. As Tennessee’s muzzleloader hunting season draws to a close, and with gun season — the most heavily utilized of the state’s deer hunts — set to open this weekend, hunters in Scott County have harvested only about one-third of the deer that are usually harvested by this point.

A late-summer outbreak of a deadly deer disease — epizootic hemorrhagic disease, or EHD for short — is being blamed for the lack of deer that most hunters are seeing. There have been rumors in hunting circles of as much as 75 percent of the local deer herd dying off from the disease.

Fortunately, those numbers are way overblown, wildlife officials say.

Wade Young, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency law enforcement officer assigned to Scott County, told the Independent Herald Monday that EHD has definitely taken a toll, but it doesn’t appear to have been too devastating.

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The complete story can be found in the November 16, 2017 print edition of the Independent Herald.