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July 30, 2008


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i think a hunter should have to harvest a doe to get the chance to tag a buck if that is what the region needs in terms of management. that being said i wanted to shoot a doe last year and could not get one until almost end of Oct. and was plagued with non shooter bucks...... had they been mature bucks and i couldn't shoot one because i hadn't taken a doe, i would have been furious!!
I believe that a hunter should have to harvest a doe to earn a buck tag for the following season. thus making oppurtunity fair and if he is serious about a buck he will work toward herd management so he can buck hunt the following year......if he doesn't do this then that will be one more buck tag/ buck deer to mature for another season........ i see that as a win/win situation..... just my thoughts

I have a self imposed 2 doe to every buck i take minimum...... besides i like to eat deer so i never have too many in the freezer :)

While I understand the merits of killing an adequate number of does, it would absolutely suck to have to let the buck of a lifetime walk.

I have to wonder how many people either have a friend kill a couple of does and put their tag on one of them or kill a couple of does themselves and have a relative tag that doe so they have access to couple of buck tags @ all times. I can't believe stuff like this isn't going on. The temptation would be too high for it not to be.

Personally I would rather do things like my home state of Indiana is doing. They issue bonus doe tags and have made this attractive to hunters by limiting the buck harvest to one per year. Over the last few years the number of does being killed is almost on a one to one basis and (after speaking with an Indiana deer biologist) this plan will remain in effect for the foreseeable future.


My experience is that the people who are against harvesting does haven't been educated in the merits of modern deer management. There are loads of deer hunters in Indiana who are shooting surplus does. And, there are still plenty of them who are not.

Many folks don't understand the correlation of less deer= bigger deer (and, yes, bigger racks). Hunters can actually improve their buck hunting, by shooting excess does in overpopulated regions.

I've learned from Dr. Kroll, that fawn recruitment (or, rather, fawn buck recruitment specifically) is tied to deer densities. In short, the higher the deer density in a given area, the lower the recruitement of bucks will be in those areas. If the proponents of doe harvest would be educated in deer biology/dynamics, perhaps they'd understand the necessity of harvesting does.

We all know that the people who aren't shooting does, or who are against it, are many times those stuck in the past when it comes to the "we ain't shootin' the does my daddy helped protect" mentality.

Perhaps Wisconsin, or Indiana, or all states for that matter, should try a campaign to educate hunters on the importance of doe harvest for the overall health of the herd, and the great hunting it helps create. I've never seen anything put out by the Indiana DNR on Why Hunters should harvest female deer. If they would put up an article in the Deer Regulations Guide every year, and include scientific and biological information proving that harvesting excess does is actually a good thing, then they'd slowly get hunters to understand their role in modern deer management.

? for you guys that live in a one buck state (here in Ill.) we are 2 bucks. how do you guys decide on a shooter?
i typically will shoot a nice solid 125" (3 1/2yr. old+) if i get the chance and then hold out for a really mature 5+ or something over the 140" mark but what do yo u all do when a nice 3 1/2+ buck that is a 10+ that will score 132" with dececnt mass...... do you let him walk or do you end your season...... wait on the giant that may never happen or fininsh with a really respectable buck????????

i would like to know all you guys thoughts on where you draw the line if you have a 1 buck per year restriction

Flatlander, when I see him I will know. I "scout" a ton in the summer (from the roads with binocs and camera...and trail cam. too) so I know what the area holds. I usually have a pretty good inventory of what the area holds. I guess if one of the good ones comes along and offers a good shot, and it feels right, I'll take it. Then, I patiently (O.K., maybe impatiently) wait until the following season to try and kill another one of the good ones.

We will be in our 7th year of OBR this season, and the herd has changed from just 10 years ago. Recruitement is up, and so is the number of bucks that make up the herd (as a percentage of the herd). Each year, more older bucks are making it another year, so things are getting better and better.

I guess if the situation feels right, I'll go for it. Don't know if that answers your questions, or not.


I set a certain goal for myself based on scouting (and previous sightings) and if I can't kill a mature buck. I eat my tag.

I'm just not going to shoot a 1 1/2 or 2 1/2 year old buck just to fill a tag. I also won't shoot any buck/doe fawns.

There are plenty of older age class does to fill the freezer with (and a very long season to do so).


thanks for the feedback..... i don't have the situation to allow me to see what bucks are around in the summer...... they stay on no hunt zones (which are impossible to watch withuot aircraft) except when they come around for the rut or late feed patterns. every year we see, hear of or take a big ole buck that no one has ever seen and that is what helps me hold off on that second tag for a really big one.

if i only had one tag i would probably start passing deer in the 135" range waiting on 150" but realisticly that could be many seasons without one........ and i still like shootin' them!

i am greatful to get for the feedback on this blog to help shape the future decisions on my hunting by some very educated deer hunters.....hard to believe it's free :) THX Hanback

Flatlander, thanks to you and everybody else, more coming soon on the new site, forums, rut report, upload your pictures, etc. stay tuned.

Flatlander, Who said anything about any of this being free? The way I see it, you owe me somewhere in the thousands, friend!!!!




You are right. This is a great blog!

Mikes doing a great job keeping the posts/topics varied and the different points of view definetly keep it interesting.

Looking forward to the new format, Mikey!



Dean, funny.....
your starting to sound like my wife!!
just kidding

i had money back when gas was $0.98/gallon and a good used bow was $50 (all set up)

remember back then....... we didn't buy tree stands we built them

FL, all too well. By the sounds of it, you're a 30-something like myself. $0.98 a gallon was a steal. You know you're getting older when you talk about "the good old days" and talk to the younger generation about "cheap gas".

Another sign, is when the youngsters have a nickname for your hairstyle (The infamous Mullet), and also make fun of it.

The funny thing is that I didn't have money back when gas was $0.98/gallon. Only enough to put in the car and go...

EAB is great especially when you have a sticker in you back tag like me :> but not so good for my dad who passed 13 bucks waiting to kill his doe last year sucks for him not for me regardless i hunt public land and am a die hard meat eater so if its brown its down another intrestign fact is in the cwd units in WIsconsin its UNLIMITED EARN A BUCK wich mean for every doe you shoot you can shoot a buck why don't more guys hunt wiscosnin it has unlimited bucks zones !!!!!!!!!

My home area in Michigan where i hunt doesn't have alot of bucks that go over 130" We might see one once in a while but not very often. I would love to be able to hold out for bigger ones around 150" but there few and far between. If i see a good 2-1/2 year old i will fill my second tag for sure. Im very happy taking bucks 100" to 110" Thats just what we have to shoot most of the time. Last five years the two biggest we have taken is 124" and 140" Ive seen a couple 140" plus the last few years but it might only be once or twice the hole season from Oct. to Dec. Having only a 32 acer piece and a 40 acer piece to hunt can make it difficult, but we are putting in some good food plots to help improve this i hope. There is a couple in the area that should go 140" to 150" plus, mabey this year will be the one! If i am going to fill my second tag i will usually wait for the end of bow season to see if i can get a good buck in range, if not then i'll try to see what happens in rifle season. Last rifle season the four best buck i saw were all about 110" to mabey 120" But you never now when that big boy will show his face!

hey Scott if the 2 1/2 halfs go 1 more year they will be really nice, not judging though, i was still shooting 2 1/2 year olds in 2004 but have sinced started to pass. i know what you mean though we aren't a huge buck area and most of my spots are 3-10 acre woodlots.... although there are some whoppers around......or at least i tell myself that to help hold out......if i get too trigger itchy i stuff another doe in the freezer and that keeps me happy for awhile :)

Flatlander, i know what you mean, one more year would be nice. There is so much hunting pressure here that i always think they will get shot anyways. Wich i no isn't the case for all of them. If i could get more people in the area to pass on smaller bucks that would be great but most of them wont, and thats fine, its there tags and time. but man all it would take is two years or so and we could have a lot more nice bucks to hunt! I hunted Ill. two years ago and passed on some nice 120" bucks waiting for a big boy, almost connected twice but not quite. Came home with no buck and was happy just to have the opportunity to get a crack at one of the big boys. Was one of my favorite hunts. I will get back there again soon i hope.

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