PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Wildlife officials in Maine say hunters in the state had their most productive season in more than 10 years, according to registration data.

Maine's firearms season for deer ended on Nov. 24. The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife says hunters in the state have taken more than 30,000 deer.

The deer season for hunters who use muzzleloaders is still going on, so hunters will likely top the 2004 total of nearly 31,000, but fall short of the 2002 total of more than 38,000.

The state hiked the number of deer permits it distributed this year by 28 percent, to nearly 85,000. The deer herd showed strong survival over last winter, in part because of moderate weather, which allowed the state to distribute more of the hunting permits.

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