PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Maine wildlife officials say the Pine Tree State is considering offering the largest number of deer hunting permits in its history this year.

Biologists with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife are recommending nearly 85,000 "any deer" permits this year. Those permits allow hunters to harvest deer of either sex. The recommendation would be an increase of 28 percent from 2017.

The biologists propose to trim the number of permits issued in northern Maine while expanding the hunt in the central and southern parts of the state. They say many deer survived the winter in central and southern Maine.

The permit increase is subject to public hearings. An advisory council is expected to cast a final vote on the number of permits in August.

The hunt's in fall.