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      Hunters experience a slow first day of firearm deer season

      H unters made their stops at DNR check stations throughout the day friday for the first day of firearm deer hunting season.

      " I was really excited it was the biggest buck i've shot today and I've been hunting since I was 14 ," Vito Daniele, deer hunter said. "S o I was just is ecstatic and being able to celebrate with my family just made it that much more of a pleasure."

      H owever this year , traffic at th e Gaylord check point was a little slow.

      " I'd say it's a little bit quieter than normal ," Keith Kentigh, DNR wildlife biologist said. "W e ar e of course see i n g a lot of nice bucks early on , because of the antler point restrictions that have been instituted this year ."

      T he antler restrictions make it so hunters can only shoot deer that have matured. E ach deer must have three antler points on at least one side.

      T he DNR believes this will strengthen future hunts, but could send some hunters home empty handed this year.

      " The main implication is that they are just less bucks available this year for hunters to harvest ," Kentigh said.

      W hile opening day means taking home a piece of pride for many , it's also about spending time with family and enjoying the down time.

      " My favorite part about it is being out there with my dad and experiencing the outdoors together ," Brian Carnes, deer hunter said.