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My first of the year...

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Scrumbag View Drop Down
Optics Master
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Scrumbag Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 00:20
Pretty deer, Kickboxer!
Was sure I had a point when I started this post...
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Sgt. D View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sgt. D Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 07:30
Needs to do some culling!! And give them some mineral licks to help with diet deficiencies. That one may have 10 points by count but his genetic map is beyond repair.
Take care of Soldiers, Show em how its done and do it with em, Run to the Fight & and hold your ground! I die my men go home! If you're a NCO and this ain't you. GET OUT! GOD BLESS AMERICA!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BeltFed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 07:45
The racks on the deer around me aren't very thick, even when the buck is large with a big for the area rack. I think it's because there is so much sandstone around here that the deer can't get to limestone to help build strong antlers.
The deer down in S/W Ky. have better racks where there the limestone is close to the surface of the soil.
Life's concerns should be about the 120lb pack your trying to get to the top of the mountain, and not the rock in your boot.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sgt. D Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 09:00
One of the things that hurt habitat health in NC is when AG started mandating no-till planting practices. No-till certainly has its benefits but when it is primarily the main planting practice the soil suffers. Deep cut rotation prevents fallowed ground and better distributes decomposition minerals. That practice provides better soil conditions and better crop or yield quality. The minerals are more abundant in the crop so all that consume reap the benefit. Us included.
 
Back in the early 90's I started my own habitat management and studied with universities in SC and GA because they were 20yrs ahead of NC standards or understanding. In a couple yrs I had developed my own diet supplements to help the deer population realize their best potential written in their genetics. I had about 1600 acres I was managing and saw over about a 3 yr period a population of 3,5 and 7 point bucks start growing symmetrical  4,6 and 8 points. And the doe were throwing double and triple fawns. It did have a down side though. The deer were hard to kill. Except for a head shot you were going to track a deer atleast 60 to 100 yds. The guys that I let hunt said I had "devil deer" cause they would't' die. I don't manage near as much land anymore. There is a lot of hours, leg work and money to keep up with large tracks. But I still like to manage what I can.
 
 
Take care of Soldiers, Show em how its done and do it with em, Run to the Fight & and hold your ground! I die my men go home! If you're a NCO and this ain't you. GET OUT! GOD BLESS AMERICA!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 11:23
I feed year round, throw out minerals constantly (which they don't seem to pay much attention to... most just melt into the ground).  "Deer management" is just a buzz-phrase if the "community" is not invested.  Mostly, around this area, hunting is year round and nothing is safe.  Even business professionals and LE are not above "poaching" if they just want to.  A couple of weeks ago, I chased two trucks out of my driveway... one of the drivers was about to shoot a doe... nobody cares.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sgt. D Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 12:03
A nightmare I know. A lot of the hunters and landowners have the mentality "if I let him go he'll get shot across the line. Sad, and a lot of times true. But, those that I have been able to convenes to try have to admit that they do have more trophy class deer on their property. It does still happen though. Where those pics above were taken I had 3, 8 point coming every evening right up until the last week of season. I was hunting south of there a couple hundred yds and heard 3 shots that evening. Checked the camera a few days later and two of the 8's haven't returned. I hope they were "trophies to the kid that shot them but who knows. In two more yrs they would have been real trophies. Such is the hunting world. And in your case with no real help from law it can seem hopeless. I had that for yrs when I first started. But I gained respect and trust from local wildlife officers by working with them in Hunter safety education and other programs they were invested in. Then I discovered the indisputable power of a camera. When you have a pic of someone in front of a posted sign even his brother or dad who is a officer can't deny the evidence. And getting to know the sheriff is a big help too. Then when you have a issue atleast he knows who you are and won't blow you off as a nobody. It is a pain to have to go to such lengths and shouldn't be necessary. But it is worth it in the long run. Don't give up, you can control your property and possibly pick up some lease on some that borders yours.
 
Salute!
Take care of Soldiers, Show em how its done and do it with em, Run to the Fight & and hold your ground! I die my men go home! If you're a NCO and this ain't you. GET OUT! GOD BLESS AMERICA!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Urimaginaryfrnd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 17:12
Iowa they hunt your land for you also, I understand the frustration.  When I am butchering deer I use motorcycle tie down straps so I can secure the deer two directions and I use a tool https://www.swfa.com/hme-deer-skinning-claw.html

"Always do the right thing, just because it is the right thing to do".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 17:19
Early today... the "rut" is getting close:

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There are some who do not fear death... for they are more afraid of not really living
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mike650 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 17:52
Big neck on buck in green grass area, upper right. Tic-tic-tic
Fish to Live, Live to Hunt
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sgt. D Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2020 at 22:52
Dan, if they are ignoring you mineral licks it usually one of two reasons. Either there is an established source somewhere near by or what you are using is bitter or bland. Either way you can make your source more appealing. My mix has no appeal to deer at all by its self. And it does have 40 to 50% salt. But with that it is still too bitter to get them started on it. Anytime you start a new lick it needs to be a granular type so you can add a cup per lb. of table salt. If the lick you buy is red it will be more pink with the salt added. In most cases a 1 or 2 lb. lick will last best part of a yr. Either dig a hole big enough to hold the amount you have level with the ground or a pine or oak stump and pour on and around it. Don't be concerned if it ends up a hole, that's normal. After your convinced they are using it regular the next mix should be 1/2 cup per lb. To keep them preferring your lick point you will probably need to keep adding 1/2 cup per lb. From what I've seen of your deer a good mineral mix will give you some really good results. The whole population will benefit. Its not just about better racks. Healthy doe drop healthy fawns and healthy fawns give you true insight into how good herd genetics are. You've got some good lookin deer but you also have several that are eating and breeding that need to go. Also mature doe decide who stays and who goes. The ideal buck doe ratio is 2 or 3 doe to 1 buck. That is near impossible to achieve with limited tags most of the time. Always take the oldest most mature doe. That disrupts the hierarchy and you will start seeing bucks you haven't seen before.
Until recently our district offered bonus doe tags for $5 each unlimited. We had actually achieved a 2 to 1 ratio for the past 4 yrs. Unfortunately they stopped offering last yr and we have had to watch our yrs of discipline and work start to slip away.
 
Stay with it and use your trail cams to get faces and plate #'s. When you give the law little option to look away they suddenly start to take you serious and the atmosphere in your area mysteriously seems to change. I got convictions on a couple bullies in the area yrs ago and next thing I know land owners in the area started callin to see if I would manage their land.
 
Salute!
Take care of Soldiers, Show em how its done and do it with em, Run to the Fight & and hold your ground! I die my men go home! If you're a NCO and this ain't you. GET OUT! GOD BLESS AMERICA!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/24/2020 at 11:01
I have mineral "holes" in several areas on my property, blocks I break up and mix.  They just don't get much use, some use, not much... I've maintained them for years and they just wash away.  I've used every mineral mix from the Co-Op, Walmart, Ace, Tractor Supply, etc... pretty much the same results for all.  
Most of the bigger bucks in this area are nocturnal... there are some that I've never seen in daylight hours.  Last year, some started coming around at different times, more this year.  Yes, there are a number that need to be removed from the gene pool... I'm not in a position to make that happen right now... I've got one "spike", probably 5-6 years old that has been nocturnal since his first year... big buck, still a spike.  In that last picture, one of his "brothers" (maybe son) is visible close to the buck hiding in the trees.  I've got a few does that pretty much live on my land... they feel safe here... and they take good care of their babies... have produced some of the better bucks.  But nice bucks don't last very long around here.  Very few reach full maturity... and the "culls" get left behind.  We have different thoughts on does.  Mature does raise their babies better... 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/24/2020 at 17:07


Put a new block out today... speak of the devil, the two ugliest bucks ever showed up...
bigger one, I believe this is his fifth season, might be four, but I believe five, smaller one second season... probably son of the older one




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There are some who do not fear death... for they are more afraid of not really living
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sgt. D Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/24/2020 at 19:36
"Mature does raise their babies better... "
 
Absolutely!! It comes down to what your goals are.
 
Our season dates allow us to wait until the fawns are weaned and typically any fawns survive fine staying with the other doe. A few yrs ago when the yotes were thick the fawns were usually gone by end of September regardless of doe maturity. Now that the yotes are much thinner our fawn survival is excellent. We take special care for fawn survival. Back when we were running 10 members there was $50 donation collected for anyone who shot one. We're only running 5 members now and shooting a fawn/yearling rarely ever happens anymore. My understanding of buck, doe herd structure is from almost 30 yrs of time in the field. The SC universities I studied with back in the 90's had a pretty good understanding of herd structure and gave me a good foundation to build on. Mature doe are selective on which bucks the will stand for (depending of buck/doe ratio). They have learned that if a younger buck is hounding them they can go to the buck they prefer and the younger buck will be highly motivated to find somewhere else to be. That is also a problem for finding a trophy buck during the rut because she goes to him in his safe place. But if most of what he can find is younger doe that is when you get a chance of catching him in the daytime. She is inexperienced and will usually take him round and round until she finally stands for him. If the ratio is bad (4+ doe to 1 buck then you end up with way too many mature doe and more opportunity for young and cull bucks to breed.
 
Salute!
Take care of Soldiers, Show em how its done and do it with em, Run to the Fight & and hold your ground! I die my men go home! If you're a NCO and this ain't you. GET OUT! GOD BLESS AMERICA!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 09:52
I don't disagree with anything you said... no need to be defensive.  I've merely been telling you what it is like HERE.  
In the '20's and '30's, the deer herds in Alabama were virtually completely eliminated...  Alabama set upon a massive replenishment program, importing deer from all areas of the US to have a varied and hardy "breeder stock".  In process, Alabama, at least northern Alabama (and that is mainly where I am talking about), created a unique herd.  There is no legitimate rut in this area... it basically lasts from Sept/Oct to around March...concentrating in Jan-Mar (I've seen some spotted fawns in Mar/Apr and Nov/Dec.  Had two, still spotted, just before Christmas (they have now "browned out".  With a gestation around 200 days, that means mating in May/Jun.).  Our hunting season was just last year extended to 10 Feb in order to more accurately reflect the rut.  Now runs from mid-Oct to 10 Feb.  Big bucks are still hanging out in groups, though there is evidence of some fighting.  
There is only, very recently (last 4-5 years), what appears to be interest in "improving" the herds.  Hunting seasons have changed, new laws governing hunting more in line with states that have large hunting incomes have been passed and it appears to be having an impact.  Alabama is no longer a "two deer a day" state.  When I first moved here, the law was "two deer a day... one antlered, one un-antlered or two un-antlered.  Some areas where there are hunting clubs have had more success and have worked for much longer times on improving the deer populations.  Some of the older clubs produce some really nice deer.  I used to belong to one, but the land was sold to a paper company who clear cut it and destroyed much of the good hunting.  That, however, improved the populations in the wildlife management area nearby... but I've never hunted there.  There are some nice bucks taken there, occasionally... the wildlife areas appear to be moderately controlled.  The club had 11000 acres, managed by a family for many years... until sold to the paper company.  
I am only describing the deer in the county and adjacent counties, where I live and the areas I have/have had direct access to.  There are photos of some really big deer, but they are not large in number.  The "Alabama Blackbelt" is known far and wide for its production of high quality deer... I've never really hunted there.  Brandon went on a hunting trip with me to the "edge" of the Blackbelt... he got a baby pig.  But Alabama has a lot of different hunting areas...some have fared better than others.  
There is still a strong population of moonshiners, methheads and poachers around here that severely impact hunting.  But that's another, longer story.  

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There are some who do not fear death... for they are more afraid of not really living
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RifleDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 13:10
Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

I don't disagree with anything you said... no need to be defensive.  I've merely been telling you what it is like HERE.  
There is no legitimate rut in this area... it basically lasts from Sept/Oct to around March...concentrating in Jan-Mar (I've seen some spotted fawns in Mar/Apr and Nov/Dec.  Had two, still spotted, just before Christmas (they have now "browned out".  With a gestation around 200 days, that means mating in May/Jun.).  


You do indeed have a weird rut in Bama, later than most anywhere else. It lasts into February.

There is no WT deer breeding taking place in May & June however. At least, not in North America. The days are too long, and the rut is triggered by hormonal changes from photoperiodism, keying on the days being shorter in fall and winter. 
A fawn can retain its spots for up to 4, sometimes 5 months. The spotted fawns you saw were likely conceived in Jan/Feb.
Ted


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 14:24
I disagree... far too small, still nursing.  In December watched both fawns nursing their mother in my driveway. Not the first time and I don't expect it will be the last.  Does not happen every year, but a lot of the years since I've been here.  Generally spots last, even here, around two to max three months. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RifleDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 15:46
A WT fawn will often nurse for up to 4 months.
Ted


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RifleDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 15:52
I’ve seen nursing fawns with spots here in TX while bow hunting in October. It’s not the norm, but does occasionally occur. Our rut occurs in Nov, usually peaking in mid Nov. Rut in Bama occurs 2 months later, hence you seeing nursing fawns in Dec.
Ted


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 16:08
They do sometimes nurse up to 4 months... sometimes only 10 weeks.  Average right around 3 months, here.  Just talking to Lori about this she reminded me that a couple of years ago we saw a spotted fawn in March just after I got back from a test series.  The two fawns just went out of spots this month... right about the time my daughter came in to visit... so maybe March/April if you max everything. 
The deer around here don't much adhere to schedules.  It will be interesting to see if they are aware of the last day of season this year.  In the past, they've had a party at sundown on the last day...
Very undependable...
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There are some who do not fear death... for they are more afraid of not really living
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kickboxer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/25/2020 at 17:02

Opinion,untempered by fact,is ignorance.

There are some who do not fear death... for they are more afraid of not really living
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