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Stupid Question....

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I dont really hunt but I always wondered this...If you were in a deer stand. and some vicious animals came by (Wolves,Bear) and they wouldnt leave before it starts getting dark. Can you shoot that animal so that you can get out of your stand or do you just have to hole up in your stand until they leave?

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I though about this while wolves were howling about a mile from me on saturday morning, and I would have to say that I would fire a warning shot. Wouldn't work so well in archery season. tongue.gif

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Nope, legally you can't shoot any animal unless you have the specific tag for that animal (or it attacks you.) I think this scenario would be pretty rare but I haven't hunt the Northwoods a whole lot. As long as you have a bright flashlight you should be ok.

Walk softly and carry a big gun! smirk.gif

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I hunt up north where there are lots of wolves, i think that why there arent many deer. I would have to agree with brassman id probably fire a couple warning shots or throw something at it to scare it away. Shooting it would be a last resort if it attacked me or something.

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If you made noise or moved in your stand, they will leave. The only way you'd get out of getting fined or jail would be if you are attacked and there would have to be proof, because you can bet the CO would investigate thoroughly. But, like I said, wolves and most bears aren't going to stick around if they know you are there.

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I don't hunt from stands, so I'm always right there on the ground if any wolves or mountain lions come wandering in. And when it's not hunting season I'm still right there on the ground with everything else, only with a camera in my hand.

A warning shot generally will make any of the predators we have in northern MN scatter and run for the hills. Exception would be a diseased animal, dog/wolf hybrid acclimated to humans or maybe if you're gutting and dragging a deer. Plenty of room for opinion on that part, and that's just mine.

A wolf would not have to be charging you in an all-out attack for you to shoot in self defense. If one came close and was snarling, I'd put a warning shot right at its feet and if it kept coming closer and being aggressive, I'd shoot it. I've had conversations with a couple COs about this, being a wolf lover (yeah, one of those) who nevertheless understands that they are predatory animals and all things are possible with wild animals. If you truly believe you are in danger from a wolf that has come in close and won't leave, you can kill it. You will however, as previously mentioned, be legally compelled to leave the wolf as it fell and report it to the DNR so they can investigate. If there's snow on the ground, piecing together the scene is easy for a good tracker. As management of the wolf switched from the feds to the DNR with the removal of the wolf from the Endangered Species List in Minnesota, the status of this type of thing may be in flux. I'm not up on all those details yet, or how far along the transition is.

It would bother me big time to have to kill one, but I'd rather be bothered than mauled.

However, odds are it would never happen. All the thousands of hunters each year in wolf country and how often do you ever hear of an attack? Plenty of situations that seem a bit threatening at the time, however. And what some hunters might consider threating, like a wolf hanging around and watching you, others just shrug their shoulders over and keep on with their business.

I have heard stories about wolves putting their feet up on the ladders of stands with hunters in them, and I have no reason to doubt that.

When it's not hunting season and I'm unarmed with just my cameras (and sometimes trying to call predators in to the camera with dying rabbit calls), I keep a can of pepper spray and a canned horn handy. At the International Wolf Center they use that piercing sound from the canned horn to break up any wolf fights that seem to be getting too serious. The noise drops the wolves right to the ground, they say.

Haven't had to use these measures, and I've been calling to get predators in to the camera up here by Ely for four years. A few weeks back I was 50 feet from a wild wolf that had trotted right up that close and watched me for a few seconds. Knew I was there. I took a burst of shots and while I was waiting for the burst to write to the compact flash card (digital camera), she took a few more steps toward me and put her head down and gave me that patented stare. I didn't feel any menace whatsoever in the encounter, and after a few more seconds she just turned and trotted off into the deeper woods.

And let's continue the good job so far and keep it civil here as this discussion continues. There's something about wolves and other big predators and people that when talk like this gets started, things can get out of hand. grin.gif

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Quote:

I hunt up north where there are lots of wolves, i think that why there arent many deer.


I hope this doesn't steal the discussion but not many deer? Are you kidding?

Let’s see. Between my brother-in-law and his son they saw four deer opening day on 60 acres about three miles east of Hibbing, most of which is occupied by the building site and barns. My daughter and I managed to get out at about 2:00pm and hunt with them until dark and we saw one in that three hour period. That same day my brother and his party (five persons) were hunting near Mt. Iron and they noted six bucks and one doe.

On day two our hunting party saw three more deer in the first 3 hours of the morning and on day three my brother, hunting alone, dropped a nice 8-pointer. As of yesterday he has personally seen at least a dozen deer in the first three days of hunting not to mention the rest of his hunting party.

As of last year my brother and I calculated that over the past 18 years of hunting we have enjoyed over 60% hunter success rate (yes in terms of deer tags filled). That’s more than double the average for the arrowhead region.

The deer population is so high that the area we hunt near Mt. Iron is designated a management area and the area around Hibbing is intensive harvest. There are more deer up there now than ever.

I don’t know what you mean by “up north” but where we hunt it is so thick that we are basically hunting a 40-50 yard radius in the forest because that’s about all the further we can see from our stands and that’s stretching it. When you consider the number of deer we do see under these conditions, imagine how many we don’t see. Judging by the signs after the snow falls I would venture to say there are plenty of deer.

One note of interest unrelated to this. Of all the deer my brother and his party has seen, they were all bucks except one with only one buck carrying a rack larger than forks. There seem to be a lot of young bucks in the area this year. Wonder where the does are?

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Well written Steve, I echo your thoughts on the subject. I have had a few close encounters with wolves and are certainly some very memorable experiences.

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I had the most awesome experience this weekend. First - I have seen wolves in the wild many times on my "up north" property. Every time as soon as they see or smell me they run away as fast as they can.

Two weeks ago my father was up north getting things ready for deer season. Early one morning while doing natures call he looked up and saw a jet black wolf looking back at him not more then 20 yards away. A second wolf (grey in color) came along -stopped and looked at him. They were not scared and wondered off.

Fast forward to last weekend. I made sure I was scent free as possible. Put some "doe in heat" on a rag and created a scent trail.

After 40 minutes in the stand three wolves with their head down followed my exact trail. They found the rag in a tree branch and tore it up (tug of war style). Then continued to come towards me. Well this jet black wolf came around and took two steps up my steps of my tree stand.

At this point I was a little excited - thinking.. do not move this is a one in a lifetime thing. The second wolf came over and started to drink out of a water cup I brought with (left on the ground). Now I know my scent was on that cup. About this time a squirrel ran 15 yards from the wolves. They were uninterested.

While I was up there I started to mess with them. I was droping water on their heads. Funny! Until I came to realize that they knew I was there the whole time. All three looked up and me and sat down!!!!

What would you do? Well I pointed my gun down the ladder and came down the stairs as fast as I could. They took off scared as can be.

These wolves have now became used to humans. Time to open a season. But WOW what an experience - it was better then shooting a deer.

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im not kidding. I also ran into another guy in the woods one time and he was telling me that there arent many deer now because of the wolves. So im not the only one that thinks that. Between my whole group of 7 hunters last weekend we only saw 5 deer between all of us. Didnt hear many shots either. I dont mean to blame the wolves or anything, im just saying thats what ive heard from other people and it seems to make some sense. Then again maybe we are just bad hunters confused.gif

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Wolves kill deer. Deer in northern MN are the wolves' primary food source. When a wolf pack sticks to a specific area for awhile, some deer get killed and eaten and most of the rest probably lay as low as they can.

If that's "blaming wolves," then I'll blame wolves. But it's just the natural way of things. The wolves and deer were here long before we were, and it's just because we as hunters want to see lots of deer and have a great pool of deer to choose from that it seems like a problem sometimes.

tealitup, that's a great story! Wish it would happen to me. grin.gif

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I know a land owner who was telling me last weekend about seeing a wolf in a remote area by Santiago south of Hwy 95 this fall. He owns a large section of land that buts up to 700 acres of swap and goes into Sherburne Wild Life area. It was during the day and he is a good source. I do believe him, unless it was someones dog.

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