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#489175 - 11/11/07 03:58 PM Does it really matter if you shoot year old bucks
pass-thru
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......as long as you shoot plenty of does? I don't mean shoot all of them, but just a few here and there. Especially where deer densitites are high. Isn't fewer deer better, as long as the does are also harvested?

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#489199 - 11/11/07 04:53 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bucks [Re: pass-thru]
BSK
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In high densitiy deer herds, no, not much. It more comes down to how many total bucks survive the hunting season, and in high-density herds that can be quite a few.

But in low-density herds it can make a huge difference.
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#489346 - 11/11/07 07:02 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bucks [Re: BSK]
deerchaser007
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 Originally Posted By: BSK
In high densitiy deer herds, no, not much. It more comes down to how many total bucks survive the hunting season, and in high-density herds that can be quite a few.

But in low-density herds it can make a huge difference.


I hate to disagree with the man here,. but i do. In high deer density areas with a high hunter density ,.. the harvest of young bucks can be devastating. Especially in areas of small parcels with several different hunters on them. You tell yourself i'm only gonna shot 1. BUT,.. if 15 other hunters in the area say the same,. you have kiled the chances of producing those bucks into the next age class.

This is not so much a issue with QDM leases or someone with a large track,. but for private landowners ,.. it can set you back.

My opinion though,........
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#489373 - 11/11/07 07:16 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bucks [Re: deerchaser007]
Chris Tripp
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Jeremy, I agree with you mostly here... but will add, that with natural mortality, chances are the same deer are liable to die naturally....
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#489835 - 11/12/07 06:48 AM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bucks [Re: ]
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 Originally Posted By: tndrbstr
What about if my main goal is to incease the overall deer density on my place? A buck, what ever the size, in the freezer is better than a doe isn't it?


For herd health, no.

If you are trying to increase herd density, creation and distribution of food and cover resources are more important than how many deer you harvest. In essence, make your property the best habitat in the area and your herd density will increase no matter how many deer you harvest.
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#489840 - 11/12/07 06:56 AM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bucks [Re: deerchaser007]
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 Originally Posted By: deerchaser007
 Originally Posted By: BSK
In high densitiy deer herds, no, not much. It more comes down to how many total bucks survive the hunting season, and in high-density herds that can be quite a few.

But in low-density herds it can make a huge difference.


I hate to disagree with the man here,. but i do. In high deer density areas with a high hunter density ,.. the harvest of young bucks can be devastating. Especially in areas of small parcels with several different hunters on them. You tell yourself i'm only gonna shot 1. BUT,.. if 15 other hunters in the area say the same,. you have kiled the chances of producing those bucks into the next age class.

This is not so much a issue with QDM leases or someone with a large track,. but for private landowners ,.. it can set you back.

My opinion though,........


But that still comes down to total harvest of bucks (what percent of the buck population is harvested). If hunters kill primarily young bucks, but only 30% of the entire pre-hunt buck population is harvested, the buck age structure still increases (most of the 70% not harvested survives and increases in age).

But what can occur in high density herds AND high density hunters is too high of a harvest of total bucks and an underharvest of does, leading to a skewed sex ratio and lower number of total bucks pre-hunt, i.e. you can have 50 bucks and 50 does in a population of 100 adult deer (1:1 ratio) or you can have 33 bucks and 67 does in a population of 100 adult deer pre-hunt (2:1 ratio). Now harvest 20 bucks out of each herd each year and you'll see a big difference between the two herds in a few years.
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#490268 - 11/12/07 12:55 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bu [Re: BSK]
Greg .
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I have to contend with exactly what deerchaser007 described -- small parcels with several/many different hunters on them (high hunter density), high deer density areas and a devastating harvest of young bucks. For example, there is a 50 acre cutover not far from me ... Saturday my buddy saw SIX trucks parked there!! If it weren't for numerous 2, 5, and 10 acre tracts around with no hunting, they'd do even more damage.

Every year, I let yearling bucks walk (this year it's been at least 5 different ones at least a couple times each). Right now, the deer seem to have all but disappeared. Saturday I saw NOTHING and this morning my son and I saw one fawn. I'm guessing they're breeding in the thickets -- and the yearling bucks are probably breeding, too, since I don't believe we have many older bucks (see above). When it's over, I'm wondering if the yearlings will still be around, or if they're already in somebody's freezer.

So, I'm waiting to see if the yearling bucks are breeding ... or dead. In either case, it is evident that our age structure for bucks is POOR.
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#490387 - 11/12/07 02:50 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bu [Re: Greg .]
pass-thru
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Thanks for your input BSK. My point in raising the issue is NOT to advocate harvesting young bucks. My point is to show that the importance is in keeping up with the harvest of does in areas where the densities are too high, which these days seems to me most of the place.

And also I think too many hunters are too conservative in their antlerless harvest for fear of shooting a button. Usually you can tell through a scope, sometitmes not, but it seems like too many programs are punishing hunters for accidentally shooting a button or a spike.

Anyway, food for thought.

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#490399 - 11/12/07 03:16 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bu [Re: pass-thru]
Greg .
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 Originally Posted By: pass-thru
And also I think too many hunters are too conservative in their antlerless harvest for fear of shooting a button. Usually you can tell through a scope, sometitmes not, but it seems like too many programs are punishing hunters for accidentally shooting a button or a spike.

Anyway, food for thought.

I agree. I think if the hunter was as careful as they reasonably could be and accidentally kills a button every once in a while ... well, that's life. Fawns have a high mortality rate anyway, so it's probably not so bad.

I think "I only shoot bucks" hunters need to get with the times.
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#490903 - 11/12/07 08:36 PM Re: Does it really matter if you shoot year old bu [Re: Greg .]
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only shoot the biggest in a group of does,that is rarely a button.Does by themselves are sometimes hard to judge,wait till there is more than one.
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