Deer Hunting on Vancouver Island

Anything you need to know about the best time, places, outfitters, and regulations of Vancouver Island deer hunting, you can find them here. We are ready to help you make a rewarding BC hunting opportunity.

The content is valid until June 30, 2024.

It can be claimed that deer hunting on Vancouver Island is one of the island's customs, especially amongst the First Nations people. Years before, they used to (and still) hunt deer on the island to prepare themselves food, clothing, and weapons. Accordingly, deer were multi-beneficial to them. Deer harvesting needs expertise, interest, fund, and a hunting licence. What really matters here regarding deer hunting on Vancouver Island is harvesting only in the open season except for fallow deer. Based on British Columbia Hunting and Trapping Regulations Synopsis, every regulation regarding hunting big game, including deer and small game, was introduced. If you want to know about the rules of deer hunting on Vancouver Island, read region 1, section deer. Hunting regulations are subject to change from time to time. It is the responsibility of a hunter to be informed of the current regulations.
Even though some of the deer subspecies don't inhabit Vancouver Island, we will introduce you to each subspecies of deer in the following. Stay with us!

Hunting Deer Subspecies on Vancouver Island

It's been years that deer harvesting on Vancouver Island has become a way through which people, especially indigenous people, earn their meat. It is one of the main sources of food and, in some cases, clothing. British Columbia is home to three subspecies of deer: mule deer, white-tailed deer, and fallow deer. White-tailed deer don't inhabit Vancouver Island, but they have been seen in some specific regions of BC, such as valley bottoms in the Kootenay and Okanagan regions.

Mule deer has three subspecies: Columbia black-tailed deer, Sitka black-tailed deer, and Rocky Mountain Mule Deer. Vancouver Island is the habitat of the first two subspecies of mule deer and fallow deer. Rocky Mountain mule deer are inhabiting Rocky Mountain.
There are no significant differences between Rocky Mountain mule deer and other subspecies of mule deer. Rocky Mountain mule deer are found in the Western Great Plains, the Rocky Mountains, the southwest United States, and on the west coast of North America.
British Columbia is home to the most significant contributors of mule deer globally, of which a considerable percentage inhabits Vancouver Island. According to Wild Safe BC, about 20,000 to 25,000 mule deer inhabit the northern parts, and the rest (about 165,000) live in the interior parts of BC. Mule deer are identified easily due to their mule-like ears; also, the shape of their ears was why they are referred to as mule deer in the first place. Their coat is greyish-brown, and they are bigger than the other two species of deer (i.e., white-tailed deer and fallow deer).

Black-tailed Deer Hunting on Vancouver Island

There are two subspecies of deer of black-tailed deer on Vancouver Island, Columbia black-tailed deer and Sitka black-tailed deer.
Columbia black-tailed deer is the only reason deer hunting has become a tradition amongst the indigenous people, especially the First Nations people. Columbia black-tailed deer are spread all around Vancouver Island, and they can be seen early in the morning and before dawn. They mainly inhabit forested areas to immune themselves from snow gatherings during winter. Another type of mule deer, the Sitka black-tailed deer, inhabits the western and central coasts. They mostly prefer living in the old-growth forests to survive during winter, like other deer subspecies.
Sitka black-tailed deer's differences from their Columbia counterparts relate only to appearance. They are as follows: the Columbia black-tailed deer is lighter in the coat's colour, weighs more, and doesn't have two white marks on its throat where Sitka black-tailed deer have it.
The open season for Sitka black-tailed deer on Vancouver Island, the same as Columbia black-tailed deer, is from Sep 10-Dec 10.

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Fallow Deer Hunting on Vancouver Island

Fallow deer that inhabit Vancouver Island aren't native to the island. Their origin goes back to Western Europe and the Middle East. They're mainly inhabiting the Gulf Islands and some of the southern parts of Vancouver Island. Although they are referred to as invasive, they have some benefits compared to other deer subspecies on Vancouver Island. Since the beginning of their time on the island, they have destroyed the vegetation of the lands they are inhabiting; thus, hunting fallow deer is a win-win! You will have the pleasure of both hunting on Vancouver Island and helping the environment conservation.

Reasons for Deer Hunting on Vancouver Island

Reasons to hunt deer on Vancouver Island are the same amongst all the subspecies. Deer have very delicate meat no one can say no to. Besides, it has too many benefits that give you ample reasons for hunting deer annually and putting it in your daily diet.
Their coat is entirely different from other ungulates' coats. Vividly colourful and, in some cases (i.e., fallow deer), the coat contains white spots on the back. You can imagine how cute and classy the clothes would look if you made them using a deer coat. So, till now, hunting deer experience, delicate meat, and classy clothing.

Last but not least, their antlers, which according to the hunters, they are referred to as the trophy of deer hunting. It is like a soccer game. Imagine when the two teams make it to the finals, and let's say team A wins the game. The trophy is theirs. The same story goes here, when you succeed in harvesting deer, in the end, you will have a trophy, and you can decorate your empty walls using them.
The mentioned reason can be enough to convince you why people are interested in deer hunting.

Why Should We Choose an Outfitter for Our Deer Hunting on Vancouver Island?

First, let's see what an outfitter is. Outfitters are licensed businesses that employ professional deer hunters to guide those deer hunting enthusiasts on Vancouver Island to make their hunting experience unique and exceptional. They provide their clients with different services and equipment in order to make your hunting adventure more convenient and unforgettable.

Three reasons why we need to have an outfitter to have the best deer hunting experience on Vancouver Island:

1. Hire the guide, ease the hunt:
Outfitters know every up and down of your deer hunting trip on Vancouver Island like the back of my hand. They know every road in the region, and they can show you the best place for your deer hunting on Vancouver Island.
2. Hire the guide and win the hunt:
The first principle of an outfitter is hiring professional hunters as guides. When you start your deer hunting tour with the company of a guide, you're more than 80% of the way there to a successful hunt. Deer harvesting is no easy job; even professional hunters will need a hunting guide to succeed in their hunt! Especially deer harvesting, one the most challenging ones, for these creatures resemble ghosts.
3. Safety:
You hire a guide, but in fact, you employ a guard! Outfitters control every hunter's coming and going and ensure that every hunter gets home safe and sound! Of course, after successfully hunting deer on Vancouver Island.

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To Wrap Deer Hunting Up!

Deer hunting has been a way through which people provided their need for meat. Deer hunting, especially black-tailed deer hunting, has become one of the recreations on Vancouver Island, attracting many tourists annually. So, if you want to check your deer hunting adventure on your hunting list or if you have any questions in this regard, please feel free to contact us!

Customize Your Hunting Trip on Vancouver Island

Duck & Goose
Snowshoe Hare
Band-tailed pigeon

Vancouver Island Deer Hunting Common Questions and Answers

There are two subspecies of deer on Vancouver Island: Blacktail and Fallow Deer.
Yes, it is allowed but only during the open season, provided that you follow all the regulations and restrictions in this regard.
Yes, they can be dangerous, particularly during the rut season, to human beings and other animals, especially dogs.
Although it is not illegal, it is better not to feed them for your safety.
The deer hunting cost starts at 5000$ for tags and licences on Vancouver Island.
Deer are crepuscular, so you can see the most activeness of deer at dawn and dusk.

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