Why so many seasons?

Discussion in 'Big Game Hunting Forum' started by ALLSTAR 1, Dec 22, 2013.

  1. ALLSTAR 1

    ALLSTAR 1 Elite Refuge Member

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    The proliferation of governmental regulations on deer hunting is starting to resemble something from the tax code..We now have season preference for age, physical ability, type of weapon, sex (of animal), etc. It is an inherently biased system that rewards a designated group with increased opportunity.
    This has caused confusion, opportunity to poach, and increased pressure on the resource without scientific basis.
    A deer shot by a 12 year old girl with a muzzle loader is just as dead as one shot with a 30-30 by her 40 year old dad. Does is make her dad and her happy? Sure, but what does that have to do with the Fish and Game department? If she can hunt a week before any one else she can hunt with her dad opening day too.
    lSolution, too easy! Everyone can kill a buck or two any ol way. If population, based on scientific analysis allows, issue limited antlerless deer permits. Set deer season for 30 days. Hunt with whatever you want. Bow hunters or no better than anyone else..They can hunt for almost 5 months here in MO> Ridiculous!

    Quit the social engineering..
     
  2. 2eagles

    2eagles Elite Refuge Member

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    As the father of two sons who really enjoyed the "youth season" for deer hunting. Oh, and we have youth seasons for pheasants and ducks too.
    And as a bow hunter who hunts 3 1/2 months in Iowa. My bow only kills out to maybe 30 yards. A shotgun to around 150 yards. A rifle to 300? So I would like a little extra time. Besides, I don't want to be in the woods when the orange army goes on their rampage.
    I guess my thought to you is..............HAHA! :l
     
  3. ALLSTAR 1

    ALLSTAR 1 Elite Refuge Member

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    Many bows only kill to 30 yds but they sure will cripple a bunch past that. What possible biological reason is there for a 3 1/2 month bow season? Every time I go in the gun/bow shop the story is; "Man, I wacked a nice one and we looked for 2 days but never did find him!" Or "whacked a doe for sausage but it was so hot the dang thing spoiled on me before we found it."
    Last two days of antlerless season; "we killed 7 for the freezer! But last year we got 15! Guess the neighbors let some more people hunt!" If MDC doesn't shut this thing down, we are going to have the same situation as Bob White quail and now turkeys. Then everybody will be hunting ducks cuz there is no upland or big game left in MO> A bunch of people told MDC the Hemmoragic Fever and unlimited doe tags were destroying our herd but nothing was done. Now deer numbers are cut by 30% even they admit and I don't think that is even close!
     
  4. flatsspy

    flatsspy Senior Refuge Member

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    Did someone have a bad season? Here in Va, bow season and ML season is the only peace we get. Gun season means dog season here. Try dealing with that for awhile and you won't think things are so bad.
     
  5. 2eagles

    2eagles Elite Refuge Member

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    Yup, sometimes things happen and an arrow doesn't go where it's supposed to. Result is a deer wasted. Usually when that happens, the bow hunter finds it necessary to look a couple of days to find his animal.
    During shotgun season, here in Iowa, the common way to hunt is large groups stomping through the timber towards blockers waiting to shoot. They blast away at any deer or even brown or white movement, not shooting vitals, just deer. That's why last night I read in the paper, two hunters were shot this past weekend by others in their group who shot at "deer". OK, now how many of these guys will stop the drive and search for hours to find a wounded deer? Not too many I think.
    Cripples and unrecovered game is something we all hate. I believe it's a more obvious problem when bow hunting. A deer might run off with an arrow poking out of the body. Makes me wonder how many ducks and geese or pheasants fly away with a bb or two in the guts, only to die later. It happens, you just can't see it as easily.
     
  6. ALLSTAR 1

    ALLSTAR 1 Elite Refuge Member

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    You have missed my point...I don't think the Government should favor one way to kill a deer over another. The amount of deer harvested should be controlled by number of permits, equitably allocated, and length of season. This should result in an opportunity to harvest a deer by whatever method(s) a person would like to do so and maintainence of a healthy deer herd.
    That said, no I am not advocating allowing Bazookas or snares,etc. Any more that we allow permitless ownership of machine guns etc. I realize that some constraints are needed. I really think much of this is driven by the desire to sell more outdoor products,increase revenues to the states and hunting related industry and tourism.
    i.e., recent proliferation of states allowing archery killing with crossbows is an example.
    Another, Mississippi will allow single shot center fire rifles in their "primitive weapons" season next year.. how "primitive" is that?

    And, Yes! I am having a very bad season. I have not raised my rifle, crossbow, or muzzle loader in two states!
     
  7. 2eagles

    2eagles Elite Refuge Member

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    I can't believe you really think a hunter shooting a bow at less than 30 yards and a rifle hunter with a 270 should be on an even playing field. I can believe you think the bow hunters are killing most of the deer. I don't believe that is happening, except in special hunt areas. I hunt a bow, deer management zone in the city limits and a couple of parks where that's the only way to reduce the herd. Gun hunting in these areas is not safe, so they have chosen to allow bow hunting instead of paying sharp shooters.
    I do believe the overall deer population is declining. That has a lot to do with insurance companies and farmers demanding fewer deer. Add a current outbreak of EHD and yup, we have fewer deer.
    You are also correct on the $$$ issues. With the gov, it comes down to the almighty dollar. Want proof? Look at the way Iowa sticks it to nonresident hunters. They get away with it because of those hunting shows and their advertisers. People believe we have record book bucks behind every tree. I also hunt private property in southern Iowa near where these shows are filmed. Several hundred acres of QDM land. Sure, we see big'uns. But only once in a while.
    We agree more than you think on this topic. Good luck with your season. :tu
     
  8. Bird Watcher

    Bird Watcher Senior Refuge Member

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    You should read "The Dirty Politics of Deer", an article in Field and Stream back in September. Unfortunately, there's no online link or I would put it here. You'll probably have to find a printed copy.

    It details the relationship between the Insurance Lobby, the Farm Lobby, and their effect on the seasons set in Iowa and Illinois. In most cases, deer regulations in the Midwest are not set in agreement with the biologists reccomendations. The are very often influenced by which lobby has the most money to throw at the legislators who set the seasons and regulations.

    Just good ol 'Merica politics as usual.
     
  9. COmarshrat

    COmarshrat New Member

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    I was involved in the setting of deer regulations for ten years as a wildlife manager in a midwestern state. Not once did I nor my counterparts get phone calls from legislators or insurance agents (or anyone else for that matter) making us change our antlerless quotas or regulation changes that we wanted to make based on biological reasons.

    Firearm (modern centerfire) deer seasons are the primary tool that wildlife managers use to regulate the population of deer. It provides for the greatest success rates and the largest harvest. The so-called "primative weapons seasons" were added in past years at various times in various states to allow for increased recreational activity (i.e. "time in the woods") without negatively impacting deer populations. Adjustments have been made over time as equipment has gotten better (less "primative", e.g. increased let-off allowing higher draw weights in bows and pelletized powders, conical bullets, etc. for muzzleloaders). Whereas thirty years ago the harvest from archery seasons was just about inconsequential, it is larger now and that is taken into consideration when setting regulations and seasons.

    These 'extra' seasons, by the way, were mostly lobbied for by sportsmen. They wanted extra opportunity to get out in the woods and be able to hunt. Since there was little or minimal biological impact (or, as time went on and hunters became for efficient and successful they actually started to have an impact) the primative seasons were initiated.

    Get to know and talk to your local wildlife managers. I used to really enjoy talking with hunters over the phone or in person. I loved the chance to educate them and help them understand the goings on of natural resources. If you approach them courteously they will spend time with you. They really are on the same side as you are...they're not out to ruin your fun and kill off all the deer.

    Most hunters have a very poor understanding of basic population biology. "Buck to doe ratios" are way out of whack, the XYZ agency issues "too many doe permits", ad nauseum.

    Regarding buck-to-doe ratios (or more properly "doe-to-buck ratios") it is biologically impossible for them to be worse than about 4:1 in most free-ranging deer herds. This is in large part due to the fact that the sex ratio at birth is just about 1:1, slightly favoring males. As a population reaches "carrying capacity", the recruitment rate drops to near zero. So the fewest number of deer produced occurs at a population nearing zero AND at a level at biological carrying capacity. The population growth curve is a sigmoid (s-shaped) curve and there is a (ONE) point (or population density) where the maximum number of fawns are produced by a population.

    The harvest model is a bell-shaped curve, where there are TWO points (or population density levels) on the graph that would provide for "maximum sustained yield", or the maximum number of deer that can be harvested from that population. The important thing to remember is that maximum sustained yield occurs at a density far below carrying capacity. This is the point most wildlife agencies are trying to get populations down to since 1) the most deer are available for recreational harvest, and 2) "social" problems (crop damage, car/deer accidents, horticultural damage, etc.) are minimized at lower densities, and 3) the deer herd is healthier at lower (didn't say "low") densities.

    Antlerless or "doe permits" are always another point of contention with hunters. In most parts of the white-tailed deer range it's hard to get a HIGH enough antlerless harvest. Concerns about OVER harvest are mostly unfounded but they still exist. I always thought that it was a good idea to explain the whole deal to hunters who did express concern.

    Bottom line, doe permits are issued based upon the number of antlerless deer that wildlife managers would like removed from the herd to achieve whatever objective they are trying to achieve. Managers must also take into consideration recent success rates in the calculations (e.g. 3-year or 5-year success rates). So, if managers want to remove 100 deer from a population and the most recent 5-year period shows success rates of 20% (one in five), 500 antlerless permits would have to be issued.

    The biggest part of the political aspect of wildlife management as far as I saw and experienced was that of habitat managment. I think hunters would be far better off in the short and long run if they directed their angst and energy towards getting habitat work done. In many states, and especially the midwest and the northest, political lobbying has virtually shut down habitat development work. Deer (and a whole lot of other game and non-game wildlife species) depend on early-successional stage forest habitat types.

    Our forests are aging and wildlife managers' hands are tied politically by "tree huggers" and even unknowledgeable hunters and hunter groups who think that clear cutting is bad and shouldn't be done. I specifically mentin clear cutting because it is vital to the regeneration of shade-intolerant forest types like aspen ("popple" in some parts of the country) and some oak types. Sure, clear cutting is not the best thing to do in the tropical rain forest or the shade-tolerant forest types in the Pacific northwest. But it is a tool in the manager's bag that should not be removed for political reasons or ignorance.

    OK...I'm done...Happy New Year everyone!
     
  10. salthunter

    salthunter Moderator Moderator

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    Well said COmarshrat



    Unfortunately politicians and ranchers have pulled some quick ones here in Idaho.

    One zone had 10,000 elk, biologists said we could sustain 16,000, ranchers complained so much that the herd was reduced to 6500

    Landowner permits and the sale of landowner permits were based on landownership, not quality of habitat. Put in place by a potato farmer/politician who plowed fenceline to fenceline, he was also the moron that reduced the duck limit from 7 to 4 ,... a burning phone , he decide not to seek a 2nd "burn"
     

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