Bowhunters' prime time, though, will come during the first two weeks of November during the whitetail rut. Thousands of arrows should fly, and thousands of deer will fall.
The fall turkey season, which opens Oct. 12, will likely generate more gunfire than folks might expect for a season in which maybe 1,500 turkeys will be killed.
A common tactic for fall turkey hunters is to find a flock, fire a couple of shots into the air to scatter the birds, and then try to call one of them back within shotgun range. So, counting the scatter-the-flock discharges, the number of shots should be disproportionately high.
Without question, the peak of hunting-season gunfire will take place Nov. 25, the first day of the firearm season for buck deer. An estimated 350,000 hunters will be in the woods on that day alone, and most will continue to hunt for at least three days.
With missed shots factored in, it's not unreasonable to estimate that deer hunters will fire a quarter-million rounds at their quarry during the season's 12-day span.
Things quiet down after that. December's muzzleloader season for deer draws only a fraction of the conventional-firearms season, and interest in hunting diminishes sharply after the blackpowder hunt ends.
None of this, of course, takes into account the rounds fired while sighting in rifles or engaging in target practice. Suffice to say that the five months that encompass West Virginia's fall and winter hunting seasons make ammunition-company stockholders very happy indeed.