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April 29, 2008


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"IF" there is truly an over population problem then I feel it is a great management tool. Not only will it aide in the anterless harvest it is also capable of helping bucks age classes to jump....ie, many hunters could care less if the deer they harvest is antlered or not. They are content to put meat in the freezer using the limited recreation time they have to hunt...zip into camp the prior evening hunyt a day or two go home with some choice venison.....let a small buck walk.

Not a bad idea at all, but we all know there are some folks will go out of their way to beat any system.

The last harvest numbers I saw for Wisconsin had hunters killing does @ a 2 to 1 ratio over bucks.

I look for more states to implement either one buck rules or earn a buck to force hunters to kill more does. Keeping doe numbers in check will improve the overall health of the herd and the bucks will become healthier and bigger as well. Not to mention the fact the rut will be like it was intended and bucks won't run themselves to death trying to "service" so many does.

It would suck to have to pass a buck because you haven't killed a doe yet and I would imagine there are some "creative" solutions for hunters trying to get around the rules!

If hunters can't keep deer numbers in check, I would look for more states to allow the killing of deer in the summer and/or bring sharpshooters in to cull deer numbers.


I look for more states to implement either one buck rules or earn a buck to force hunters to kill more does. --Jim

I do know there was talk this past season here in Virginia about setting up an EAB program. I never did hear what they decided but I think it's a great idea. THe way the initial proposal was written, I think, a hunter could take his or her first buck of the season at anytime (within the season of course) but before they could take their second buck, they had to harvest a doe. I like that because around here, a LOT of big bucks are taken during early bow season and the first week of muzzleloader( which usually coincides with the rut). Most people around here have begun hunting early muzzleloader season because of that and I think you would see hunter numbers dropping somewhat if they had to take a doe FIRST. Just my opinion on that.
However with hte way it was worded, I would love to see it implemented. Personally, I have never shot a doe. Have always thought it to be "too easy". I seem to always have a doe within bow range on any hunt and have to hunt really hard sometimes just to see more than a yearling buck within 200 yds. That has always been the challenge for me but the areas around here are overrun with deer and some does need to be harvested and this is a way to get me, and others like me, to help cut down some numbers, so I have no problem with the program at all.

Mike, have you heard anything about the proposed EAB in VA?


Cody:hunters with your mindset of "not killing doe 'cause it's too easy to kill a doe" are some of the problem with the doe over population problem to begin with.
Here in Pa archery seasons have been extended several times over the years of 1970s & 80s prior to that Pa was a 1 deer of either sex per year state. Archers held some sort of "trophy hunter" egotism attitude and kept passing does. The PGC opend MZ and early anterless rifel seasons during the fall archery season and then ARCHERS screamed as their season was being over run by gun toters...whom did they have to blame but themselves for not shooting does????? (FTR I too am an archer an have been since the 1960s)

I live in a earn-a-buck area and I for one like the results. It has kept the doe numbers in check and has definetly improved the age of the bucks and the quantity of them. My wife's last 3 bucks average over 160 inches, all shot in the last 2 years(see January post). I think earn-a-buck along with the use of solid management practices have made a huge difference for us.

I live and hunt in 3 different counties in WI and they all are in earn-a-buck. Im a diehard bowhunter who puts in 130 hrs on stand and read and watch everything I can on deer and deer management. I have read in detail our dnr's management plan and come to agree and disagree! There are alot of deer in some units and therefore alot of crop damage claims which cost us all money through our licenses and tax dollars. There are also alot of vehicle collisions that cost millions of dollars per year in damage. So i can understand the need for bringing down the deer population so that the social carring capasity is balanced. Hunters would love to have all the deer that the land can biologically carry which could be from 80 to 100 deer per sq. mile in our farm region which is where the earn-a-buck is, but the crop damage and veh. collisions would not go over well with the general public. The part I do not agree with is the making of somebody killing a deer that they dont want to. I love to shoot does in fact I past up younger bucks and shot nothing with the bow but does for the past 6 years waiting for my first mature buck which I was blessed with this past season. Taking any deer with the bow is a challange and if you dont get excited shooting a doe you are out there for the wrong reasons in my opinion. What is the right answer for a very productive herd I dont know but I think alot of hunters would change their opinions on the dnr's plan if they read the mangement program on the website and kept an open mind that they have to manage the herd for everybody not just hunters. Oh yeah I almost forgot, hunters can shoot does for the following year so as an example I shot 3 does last year and one buck so I have 2 useable eab stickers for next year. That way you can shoot a buck opening morning if you want.We also have a Zone T season thats in all the eab units on oct 16th thru the 19th thats firearms and does only so gun hunters can get their sticker before the nov. gun season. This I do not like because its 4 days of guns going off before the bow hunting rut. Sorry this is so long but this is a very hot subject around here with alot of strong feelings. Are the dnr's numbers and estimates accurate I dont know is their system perfect,doubt it but I do know WI has the number one rank in p&y bucks and number 2 in b&c bucks so it could be worse. I also think alot of people in our famous buffalo county dont like it because of the fact that their clients from other states have to shoot a doe before they can go on thier trophy hunt. I can also understand their point of view.
My 2 cents.

love eab hate the october gun hunt many a time was out hutning in october for a doe when i shold have been bow hutning and have bucks come in eab has defintly improved the size and age claas of bucks her in southeast wisconsin

Dirty, I know people who won't shoot does are partly to blame for the over population. I am one of those hunters and admit to being one. However, I don't hunt strictly for meat. We are fortunate enough not to be forced to live off of what we kill, although with the prices going up on everything the way they are that may change this season. We donate probably 80% or more of what we kill to hunters for the hungry. But when I go hunting, I am looking for more than just meat, I am looking for a buck that I want to shoot. I have no problem with people shooting does its just something I've never done because I'm looking for a buck. The last two seasons I haven't been able to hunt as much as I would like so everytime I step in the woods I'm looking for antlers. Its somehting I should probably change and begin shooting does and its why I would like to see some type of EAB program implemented in Va.


Cody I think your latest post was in reply to me not Dirty. BD

Sorry about that, your right lol. Don't know what I was thinking about. Oughta start proof reading :)

I would support Earn A Buck in my neck of the woods. I generally harvest between 2-4 does per year to my one buck that Indiana allows. Personally, I'd shoot more does if I could. My area of Indiana has a high density, so harvesting more does only helps things here. I've driven through Wisconsin for the last 25 years and there are tons and tons of deer in that state.

Funny thing is, many mislead individuals who call us "trophy hunters" aren't the ones shooting excess does. It's the "trophy hunters" who are doing it. People are funny.

I know my freind, Jim Vagts, in SE Minnesota would support Earn A Buck in Zone 3 Minnesota.

saw this van hunting near horicon wisconsin
out deer huntign last year


P.s. yeah guys have been know to tag road kills and yes i even know people who "aim" for does running in front of them just to get a sticker

Cody, have not heard about EAB here in VA, we have so many tags available, esp. east of the Blue Ridge, that I doubt we'll see it

Mike, There is a local Sporting Goods Store(W&W Novelty) for anyone who is close to Lynchburg, Va. It is where we check the majority of our deer in and we are pretty close to the owners and they brought a local newspaper article to our attention that was written about the topic. I think it was proposed in October, not sure, but I think it said nothing would happen for a year or two. I'll see if I can find the article, not sure if it will be on the website or not.




There is a link to a website with an article about EAB in Virginia. It isn't the one I talked about but I can't find that one. I have e-mailed the newspaper asking how to get it so hopefully I'll be able to post that one Mike.


I would be for it in Indiana, for sure. I usually have one or two does down before I even think about shooting a buck. There would be system abusers, just like there are now, no doubt. Poachers are poachers.

Yes, people here have been tagging road kill and double tagging. The state has tried to keep it from happeing though by spray painting carcasses on roadsides and by slitting the ears and other measures on deer that have already been taged. I agree, that most hunters don't hunt for meat anymore, they hunt for bragging rights. Of the dozen guys that hunt from our camp, only a handful of us actually take and eat the meat. It's sad really, deer hunting has turned into a real life video game for most people. Shoot 'em and let them lay.

That's a shame Dan. Venison is damn good! I think lots of folks are just too plain lazy to take care of the carcass after they're done. Hell, to me, that is part of the overall process of it all.

Gutting, skinning, and prepping venison is a cinch. I wish more people would take pride in their work.

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