Quantcast

Deer Population boom?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by MCgunner, May 24, 2019.

  1. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    My county is a 2 for antlerless.
    Bud and I haven't shot a doe in ages.

    Saw one mature doe w two fawns last yr.
    Let her walk.........and the guy next door blasted her.

    And they wonder why we have very few deer here.
    See..........at one time out county was an 8.
    Over the counter, no draw.......and even at the peak, IMHO our county should have been a 2.

    So now with so few deer, the state has broken counties down into advisory groups.
    To get a "boots on the ground" idea of the number of deer.

    This should have been done 10 yrs ago.

    Dunno if a management stunt or just politics.

    Don't care what the book says..............even though our county is a "2" again this yr, only a fool would shoot two does.
    And many will.
    Again.

    Hard to practice good management when you have a patchwork of small places. One group doesn't give a damn and screws it up for everybody else.
     
  2. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    2 counties over, there's less people, more cover, bigger tracts.........and yeah, you can fill and antlerless tag or two.
    Used to hunt there.
    But just because one can buy X number of tags, that doesn't mean they have to fill X number of tags.

    There is a "bundle" license here, 3 tags for a slight price drop. Allows 3 antlerless or 1 antlered, 2 antlerless. Fill according to season reqs.
    Guy buys a new ATV, rifle, truck.........and gets the bundle, and shoots two does to "justify" the cost to his wife.

    Just wanna smack the ^%$# out of the fools.

    Got a guy at work that does it, takes big vacations, works OT, goes to Vegas...........and has to fill a 25 dollar or less (if he bought the bundle) doe tag?

    Buy the bundle, it is flexible. Doesn't mean you have to fill it.
    If hunting with diff equip, and diff counties...........it makes sense.
    Bundle could be three tags filled in gun, or a bow tag, gun tag, and MZ tag.............
    flexible, makes sense.

    And if two tags go unfilled, it's less than 50 bucks wasted.
    Just in tag money.

    I look at hunting like going to the movies. Even if I don't get something there was a cost to the the entertainment.
    Resident tags are cheap and IMHO have ZERO influence on the experience.
    And anybody that has a decent job that tells me otherwise is full of it.

    Gas and missed overtime at work............that's where the $ loss is.

    My home county?
    I did the survey last yr and said as far as bonus antlerless goes......we should go from a "2" to a "1".

    Heck, you can still kill antlerless on reg archery and MZ tags.
    I'd be cool with a "0".

    But a "1" allows a bonus, and could be used in gun season. And some areas hold more deer than others. My spot............isn't like others. I know that.
    Know a lot of sensible deer hunters and believe their field observations.

    My idea, right or wrong........is that this is a sport.
    I would like to keep it one.
     
  3. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    Had a big doe cross the road a couple night ago 1/4 mile from the house.
    In town.
    They boogie the creek to a park, plus some reclaim spot farther in.
    Have seen a couple center of town too (following the creek).
    57K people burg too.

    Been driving to the big city for medical appts.
    See does smacked on the highway, no bucks yet.
    Quite a few.

    But we've had a lot of rain south of us.
    Plus they've redone the highway, more ramps, concrete dividers.
    A couple were splattered well up along the overpasses.
    Big splash on the dividers.

    Just bums me out. What a waste.
     
  4. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    Bud had a 140" ten pt run out in front of him, came down a street full of houses.
    But...........there was that reclaim spot in town.
    Suspect he ran a doe past the park to it during rut.

    Two guys I know saw that buck.
    I'm on the edge of city limits.
    Deer was seen a mile or more past me (in town).

    Used to watch a 100" 8 pt bed off a bridge on edge of park.
     
  5. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Messages:
    7,097
    In my state it's a combination of management and politics. Crop damage claims from farmers, insurance companies(car/deer collisions), CWD and over-browsing combined with the desire to please the majority of hunters. The latter has changed over the years tho. back when I was a kid, folks just wanted to get a deer, any deer. When populations increased, so did the number of permits and the length of seasons. Now it's got so folks want to see more deer and larger bucks. Still hard for the state to control what gets shot on private land. One land owner lets everything but the biggest of bucks walk, while the neighbor shoots as many as he sees till his and his buddies tags are all filled. Used to be the state tried a "earn a buck" system where you has to tag a doe before you could shoot a buck. This was as an incentive to control overall deer numbers. Met with a lot of resistance and one doe earning multiple buck tags. Baiting here, once banned and used only by the biggest of poachers, was then allowed as deer populations exploded and as an incentive to new hunters. Then came CWD and now baiting is banned again in most parts of the state. While we need to state to institute guidelines, bag limits, seasons and hunter ethics, we as hunters also need to institute our own. Years ago when antlerless tags were unlimited to every area in the state, after many of the northern counties suffered severe winter kill, some folks still thought they had to fill every tag they could get. Folks would complain about only seeing one deer all season, but in the next breath would brag about shooting it. These same folks blamed the state the next year when they didn't see any deer. Common sense and the use of stewardship for the area you hunt, should be standard operational procedure, along with safe and responsible hunting. At the same time, if we wish to let baldies and Bambi walk, we also need to respect others that don't, as long as they are being legal and ethical. Over the years, I too have let many small bucks walk only to hear a gunshot ring out after they disappear over the hill. While I feel a bit perturbed, it's the chance I take. It's not always a greedy hunter shooting the little pencil horn, chanting "if it's brown it's down!", sometimes it's a new young hunter taking their first buck.
     
  6. Shanghai McCoy

    Shanghai McCoy Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    3,818
    Location:
    The,sort of, Free state
    My zone allows two antlerless tags,($22.50 each), after you buy the Any Whitetail deer tag,($42.50). And those are the Resident prices.
    Here in the "Free State" it's not so much management or politics, it's about the money...
     
  7. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    We are allowed one buck. While id like to see smaller ones get bigger......i know when somebody shoots a small buck theyre proly done.

    And that takes pressure off the bigger ones. Theyre there......just never see them in legal light.

    My gripe is with shooting does in an area where there are hardly any. Forget a deers range......but county wide.....multi county.....the numbers are down.

    The kill is about the same....which doesnt tell the whole story like some would try to have folks believe.

    I saw 6 deer last yr. Same ones repeated a few times. Shot one.

    My old spot....i saw that many a day....different ones. Hell one eve in gun opener.....had over 40 down the hill. Nothing big
    .....basket racks and a pile of does and fawns. But over fourty freakin deer at one time.

    Lots of poaching. They stopped making doe tags by draw and in ten yrs it was odd to see a good buck with more than a couple does.

    Then EHD hit. Really knocked em back
     
  8. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    The numbers at my old spot in the 90s were high but the quality of bucks was too. So im not fully on board w low doe numbers making for better bucks. Think there are more factors.

    On our close to home spot....it was rough going. A basket 8 was a big one. Hell....went a few yrs with no bucks seen and very few antlerless.

    Now there are few does but more bucks. 2 yrs ago I let five bucks walk on the gun opener ( biggest a 90" 8 point). What changed? Pressure. We had two young guys next door hunting start of bow....rattling start of bow.......rut scents.....start of bow. Property sold. Different hunter that likes low pressure approach. We all see and get deer now.....even w low numbers.

    But he doesnt shoot does either
     
  9. entropy

    entropy Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Messages:
    7,831
    Location:
    G_d's Country, WI
    Deer and bear up here. There was a sow with 4 cubs in someone's backyard on the news.
     
  10. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Messages:
    7,097
    I agree. But lower doe numbers means more access to bucks because they cover more territory in search of does. This is the idea behind correct buck/doe ratios. Increased competition for fewer does means more fighting between bucks, more scrapes being made and bucks traveling farther and more during daylight hours to find them. This means more fun and in many minds a higher quality hunt. It doesn't necessarily result in bigger or better bucks, just the opportunity to see more bucks. Turkey hunters will attest to the fact that fewer females makes for more access to males seeking to breed them. In areas where Toms are always "henned up" it's harder to get a response from a Tom. Toms travel less and Gobble less the more hens are around. One reason I hunt turkeys in the fall is to reduce hen numbers so I have less competition from them in the spring when I'm trying to call Toms.

    Size of the horn is always going to be dependent upon age, forage quality and availability, and genetics. In areas where forage is natural, overall numbers need to be kept to what the area will support. The effects of harsh winters and continuous over browsing need to be factored. In areas where Ag crops are available, food plots are established or continuous feeding is offered, numbers generally are never going to be high enough for feed to be a problem, even in the harshest of winters. Then there is the issue of recruitment. In areas where there are high bear/wolf/yote depredation on fawns, resulting in higher fawn mortality, there will be fewer young deer making it to adulthood. In areas where there are few predators, there is a higher fawn survival rate. Both scenarios need to be considered when it comes to managing numbers and setting bag limits. In my state, another factor used for determining bag limits for deer is amount of car/deer collisions.

    Back when I primarily hunted deer on a large parcels of public land, I used to scout areas not to find deer numbers, but to establish how much hunter pressure was in that area. Fewer hunters in a spot this year meant more deer in that same area next season. While feed was also a factor in early and late bow season, cover, sanctuary and pressure were determining factors during the regular gun season. Nowadays, hunting private land is not much different. Come gun season one cannot expect to see a lot of deer coming from the neighbors side that shoot everything they see, nor should one expect that little buck crossing the fence in that direction to come back. Fewer shots on opening weekend of gun season makes for more and bigger bucks seen next early bow season. Just the way it works.

    It's really a simple process, but many factors contribute.
     
  11. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    The good guys around my spot, blast every coyote they see ( a shoot out the back door kinda thing ).
    Hopefully that keeps fawn mortality down.
    We see em in deer season, we blast em.........no coyote shall pass.
    Some around but way less in number.
    Might be due to nearby guy having thermal gear and permission from a bunch of folks around us.

    5K for a sight to pop yotes...........too rich for my blood.
     
  12. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    I don't care what people shoot.
    But I do get tired of folks complaining about not seeing deer and when they do see a mature doe, they pop her.

    If ya have lots of does, sure..........fill some tags.

    But if ya don't it's just silly to whittle em down.

    Bud and I haven't taken a doe on that little spot for over 10 yrs.
    Not that we haven't tried.
    But we "try" in early bow. Crops up..........and lack of acorns............haven't seen good doe numbers for over 5 or 6 yrs.

    Buddy has filled antlerless with button, on purpose. But then he let all the branch antlered bucks walk.
    I'm on board with that.

    But honestly, it gets harder to shoot anything, every year.

    Used to have almost 200 acres, big mature woods, CRP, hills and gulleys. Great turkey spot too. Could run n gun. High number of deer (used to be) w good bucks. Was dynamite.

    Now hunting about a 15 acre thicket, houses around.........its way different.
     
  13. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Messages:
    7,097
    Used to bow hunt deer and shoot quail over my pointers, across the road from my house. Now it's a sub-division and soccer fields. Problem with hunting many folks have nowadays, is having a decent spot to hunt. Just gonna get worse. Still have a lot of deer by my house tho, they come into the back yard and eat my apples and strawberries. Every year there are several scrapes made under the apple trees. Come winter time they come right up to the front porch and browse on the blueberries bushes. Just can't shoot them.

    Size of bucks on the private land around here has actually increased over the years since I was a kid, since more pressure is being put on small parcels of private land and those hunting public land are now more prone to let small bucks walk. The local Bass and Musky fisheries also have improved, not just because of more stringent size/bag limits, but because more folks voluntarily practice catch and release. This is where hunters have to get to.
     
    Hookeye likes this.
  14. Hookeye

    Hookeye Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    2,695
    I miss my old house. Big fireplace.
    End of deer season I'd pour a stiff drink and burn unused tags.
    Ritual.

    Eh, I don't mind burning tags (fireplace).
    Don't mind not getting a deer either.

    What sucks is when I don't see a buck over 100" all year.
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice