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Scott M

Adults abusing youth tags

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Scott M

From St. Paul Pioneer Press

Chris Niskanen

One deer manager calls it Minnesota's "dirty little hunting secret."

Hundreds of adult hunters are registering their antlerless deer using tags allotted to youth hunters. Department of Natural Resources officials say the tactic, which is illegal, is acute in the Zone 4 in western and southern Minnesota, where the agency has dramatically restricted antlerless, or doe, deer tags to help rebuild the herd.

"We don't restrict youth antlerless tags because we believe it's important to give youth hunting opportunities,'' said Lou Cornicelli, the DNR's big-game program coordinator. "But the program is being abused by adult hunters."

Cornicelli noticed the trend by looking at how successful youth hunters are in Zone 4, which is primarily an agricultural zone where deer herds are vulnerable to overhunting.

Typically, youth hunters kill about 10 to 15 percent of antlerless deer, but in some Zone 4 areas, youth hunters are registering 33 to 78 percent of the antlerless deer.

"It's just not possible,'' Cornicelli said. "Either those kids are fantastic deer killers or parents are shooting their kids' deer."

The incentive to cheat comes after adults fail to draw antlerless tags. So they kill a deer and register it using a youth license, Cornicelli said.

He added that the practice makes it difficult for the DNR to accurately manage the herd in areas where the antlerless kill is limited. "We may have to go to bucks-only if it continues in some of those areas,'' he said.

He said few hunters are ticketed for the violation.

*******************************************

Pretty sad that people stoop that low. You figure that a minority, an insignificant minority of people would tag a deer meant to be used by a kid. But those numbers don't lie. LOTS of people are doing it. What a shame. Could bring down antlerless hunting in that zone.

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BobT

I'm a bit confused by this. In some cases, it really doesn't matter. For example if the youth is under 14 he cannot hunt alone and therefore is hunting in a party of at least two because in order for the adult to be with him, the adult too must be licensed and therefore there are two tags to fill. Oh wait! There is an advantge to the adult hunter. If he uses his youth's tag, he can still hunt alone if he wishes. Talk about greedy and inconsiderate of the youth!

Bob

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Jameson

It makes me sick. I hunted a lottery area both 4A and 4B. I had does and fawns running under my stand, with only a buck tag in hand. To think that other people are poaching deer to the point that the herd may not recover and I may not ever get another anterless tag if this poaching continues. The poachers using the youth tags are disrespecting hunters.

If the MN DNR cannot get this problem under control, the DNR is contemplating having to make some lottery areas "bucks-only." I say go one step further and shut down deer hunting in that area for a year or longer if needed. If they completely shut down an area to hunting that would get the poachers and neighboring hunters attention. I think the local community will quickly eliminate the adults abusing youth tag problem if a stiff reaction from the DNR occurred.

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Scott M

Zone 4 is mostly lottery areas for antlerless. Youth tags are either sex, require an adult mentor for supervision, and cannot be used in party hunting. An adult shooting a kid's deer means he can shoot whatever walks past him instead of waiting for a buck if that adult doesn't follow the rules.

I think people are missing the point of the youth tags...they are youth tags so youth should use them, not adults. Gosh that's a difficult concept.... confused.gif

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Dave S

This is disturbing. Very disturbing that the numbers are that high.

We had 11 people in our hutning party this year, including 3 hunters age 17 and younger. I refuse to allow anyone in our party to shoot deer for the sake of filling a youth tag, thus the reason we only went 2 for 11 this year. It's not that we didn't see any deer. But the clear shots just weren't there for any of us.

In all, our youthful hunters learned something very important this year. It's not just about shooting a deer. It's also about being respectful to other hunters, choosing your shots, and ensuring what's on the other side of your target.

My weekends are about passing on a good set of hunter ethics to our kids and to make sure they can appreciate the time outdoors. We do have a couple in our party that are of the "Old Timer's Mentality" and it pains them to pass on deer. But I think they learned even more than the kids this year.

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lcornice

The other important point there that wasn't mentioned is that youth hunters are 2-4x more successful on antlerless deer than youth hunters in managed or intensive areas (where everyone can kill antlerless deer). In other words, despite being in areas with lower deer populations, they have significantly higher success rates. Unfortunately, it's just not statistically possible.

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lcornice

Quote:

I'm a bit confused by this. In some cases, it really doesn't matter. For example if the youth is under 14 he cannot hunt alone and therefore is hunting in a party of at least two because in order for the adult to be with him, the adult too must be licensed and therefore there are two tags to fill. Oh wait! There is an advantge to the adult hunter. If he uses his youth's tag, he can still hunt alone if he wishes. Talk about greedy and inconsiderate of the youth!

Bob


Youth licenses are for people 12-17 years old. So, they can theoreticlaly hunt alone for 3 of those years.

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PerchJrkr

Even though they can hunt alone, nobody can legally kill that deer but the youth. Legally there is to be no party hunting involved.

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tealitup

If you are a father and you take your son/daughter out - why would you shoot their deer? I think there would be more enjoyment in watching your child enjoy the entire process.

Maybe youth hunters are taking more deer because the parents are helping their children more.

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Stratosman

greed...and I bet more than one tag is given to a youth that doesn't even step foot in the woods....maybe a couple of the "hunters" daughters.....but dad takes them out to tag and register it.

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chucker34

I agree that its appauling. On a purely selfish note, if we go to all bucks, would that be statewide or just in lottery areas lcornice? And would archery and ML be included in that restriction. confused.gif

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Wanderer

Stratosman,

Thats EXACTLY what I was thinking too. Did they notice a significant spike in youth tags SALES in those areas too?

What a joke. Behave. frown.gif

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Wanderer

Chucker,

I don't know what they would do in the future, maybe eliminate the youth tag opportunity in those areas, but that wouldn't help promote youth hunting.

Right now, in our area of Zone 4, its bucks only/doe by permit with a firearm. Bow is still either/or. What I was suprised to find out is that with an All Season tag, you can not only take either, but if you do take a doe with a bow, you can put it on one of your antlerless tags. You don't have to burn your buck tag.

Regardless, you are still limited to ONE deer no matter how or what you take.

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MNUser

Surprise, surprise....another example of me, me, me!

Maybe someday we as a group will get back to the days of morally sound people making morally sound decisions.

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Bandit

I don't think most of these [hunters??] have any idea who shot the deer. I have witnessed this "circus" in the valley. 6 pickups driving around a section waiting for the combine to kick out the deer and the race is on. It made me sick. I am sure there are law abiding hunters around here, but I sure did not see any that day. What a way to teach your kids.

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BobT

Da_chise31

Where does it state that a youth hunter cannot participate in a party hunt?

LEP7MM

Yes, it is good to teach hunter ethics but it seems we all define ethics in our own way. I agree that it isn’t ALL about getting a deer…or is it? Why are we there? As I’ve shared before, we are there primarily to get the prize. If that were not true, then we wouldn’t just sit in our deer stands for two weeks in November. We would do at all times of the year just for the enjoyment we get from it.

Party hunting is a shared experience and isn’t all bad and there is something to be learned when party hunting. That is, the essence of sharing. This year, my daughter (13) and I saw one doe and it didn’t give her the opportunity to take a shot. Were it not for party hunting we would not have venison at all this year but on the last day of our hunt I told the rest of our party that if opportunity presents itself, feel free to fill one of our tags (my daughter’s or mine). At approximately 8:30am a nice 8-pointer was taken. Because of party hunting we are able to enjoy venison sausage, roasts, steaks, etc. Furthermore, because the person that got that opportunity used one of our tags, he was free to hunt the rest of the season when we were unable to join him. We only had three days out of a 16-day season in which we were able to participate. As it turns out, he was able to get another opportunity again later that made it possible for us to share two deer between five rather than just one.

The real reason there is a youth license is because we parents are too cheap to fork out the cost for a full-blown license and so youth hunter participation was dropping. Since installing the youth license at a lower price and not restricting them to bucks only in lottery zones, it encourages youth participation again. Not forcing buck only relieves them of the probable legal action if they misidentified a buck due to their lack of experience.

My daughter at 13 cannot hunt alone. In order for her to participate I had to be licensed as well as she. That gave us two tags to fill IF WE CHOSE. I carried my .44 pistol and she carried her .243. She was informed that she was the hunter and I was along for the ride. Any deer that gave us opportunity, whether she shot it and tagged it herself or used my tag or any other party memeber's tag would have been taken by her and not me. Just because there are other tags in our party that can be filled by any member of that party does not imply that my daughter or my nephew would be taught not to pay attention and properly identify their targets or what's behind them. That is all part of why they are not allowed to hunt alone until 14. It forces us parents to at least participate enough that maybe we'll teach them about such things. I take exception to the implication that we teach anything less in our party!

Bob

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Hammer Handle

They should get away from the youth being allowing to shoot an anterless deer. They should hvae to draw a doe permit like everyone else.

They will still hunt and have the experience. It won't be any different than it is now, except someone won't shoot the deer for them and make them shoot bucks only anyway.

This really needs to be changed.

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Eric Wettschreck

I'm not as good with words as bob, but let's all step back for a minute and quit tossing arrows on based on assumption. Facts should be gathered before we all start looking for a rope and a tall tree.

My hunting party of 7 had 2 young-uns with youth tags. 6 tags were filled and the one that wasn't was a youth tag. I had an antlerless permit and I tagged a buck.

I take a small amount of offense to some of the posts I've read. Notice I said small amount. Yes, ethics are to be taught, but just because yours are different than mine does that make me a bad guy??? Food for thought.

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B. Amish

why not just eliminate party hunting all together!

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CodyDawg

I see this discussion moving towards a party hunting topic. However, the original post was NOT about party hunting, but rather adults abusing youth either-sex tags. The facts are pretty overwhelming that it is occurring in Zone 4. BobT, in the article, it does state the rules regarding party hunting and youth. An adult cannot fill a youth anterless tag.

I find it disturbing that this is happening. Talk about a lack of ethics. I like getting the prize as much as anyone, but c'mon people, it ain't the end of the world if you don't get a deer. To break the law and fill a kid's tag just isn't right.

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lcornice

Quote:

I agree that its appauling. On a purely selfish note, if we go to all bucks, would that be statewide or just in lottery areas lcornice? And would archery and ML be included in that restriction.
confused.gif


Just certain lottery areas and I am not suggesting it would happen. There's still be a total reduction of antlerless harvest even with the youth problem. In any event, a decision won't be made until after the winter.

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lcornice

Quote:

Stratosman,

Thats EXACTLY what I was thinking too. Did they notice a significant spike in youth tags SALES in those areas too?

What a joke. Behave.
frown.gif


No, youth licenses make up about 12% of all hunting licenses statewide. It doesn't really vary by area.

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Surface Tension

Boy how folks will whip themselves to a froth based on assumptions and here we go complaining about how crappy our hunt was. What can I dream up to make it better for ME.

We all agree that youth tags be filled by youth. The intension of the law was to provide youth with a better chance to bag a deer. My son is 11 years old and has his firearm safety. Hes come along with me for the past 4 or 5 deer seasons. Next year he'll be able hunt and I look forward to him being able to take a doe or buck. Those of you who would take away that opportunity from a kid to better their odds of taking a deer are well, as selfish as a parent that tags a doe on his kids tag. When you have a kid you'll understand where I'm coming from. Having had my son along all those years I'll tell you this. He won't take a marginal shot, its one shot, one deer. He can't pick out deer sneaking though. A shot opportunity for him will have to be close and wide open. I could take 10 deer to his one but of coarse I won't. I want his first hunt to end with a deer. We had a few of those easy opportunities this season. In the back of my mind I thought about handing him the rifle. No one would know but him and I. Didn't do it, that wouldn't be teaching him right.

Do away with youth tags because a few Dads will put themselves before their kid? What about the Father and Son/Daughter team that have been working toward the day his kid will hunt, like all Dads should. Its what Men do. Real Men anyway.

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Scott M

Quote:

Da_chise31

Where does it state that a youth hunter cannot participate in a party hunt?


Bob's right, I looked again and I was reading about the special youth hunt which are different from the youth tags. So clearly there is a loophole (party hunting) in the regulation, although there are some moral and ethical boundaries being crossed.

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brittman

The party hunt vs no party hunt is a separate issue.

Youth tags are for youth only. If this is abused then abandon it.

I would suspect that the success rate in zone 4 would be higher. In ND the success rate for all whitetail deer is above 75%. The open ag zones should present youth with an excellent chance to shoot deer if they have access to private land.

Did the study say the youth success rate has increased dramatically since the number of general issue antlerless tags were reduced?

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