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uptracker

How's it looking after last winter?

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Surface Tension

Definitely less deer which is a good or bad thing depending on who you ask.

I'll be in a bucks only zone but we have plenty of deer where I hunt. They've been fed and didn't have much if any winter kill.

Interesting note. Last season the majority of deer brought into the local deer processor were bucks.

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musky hunter

There was severe winter kill in northern Wisconsin.The area I hunted last year near the Brule River was nearly ground zero for winter severity as measured on the DNR winter severity index. At least the northern approx 40% of Wisconsin is bucks only, and you can only take one combined any method. Only around Superior could you get a doe tag for archery only, and it was limited to 150 and is sold out. I can personally vouch that deer sightings in and around Superior are substantially reduced. Doesn't mean there are no deer, just fewer. Yearlings were particularly hard hit. In my six total hours hunting in and around Superior, I have seen one deer.

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BRULEDRIFTER

Nary a deer to be found in the northland, with the exception of pockets near populated areas where the deer had an easier go at it the last few winters.

I spend a lot of time driving for work throughout northern MN and rarely see deer and deer kill on the road. I saw 2 dead deer on Hwy 16/15 heading to Silver Bay area, and each carcass had a dozen or more ravens working on it, as well as 4-5 bald eagles, all at the same time on 1 carcass. To me that is very telling how low numbers are up here.

Don't come up with very high expectations of filling a tag the next few seasons.

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uptracker

Definitely less deer which is a good or bad thing depending on who you ask.

I'll be in a bucks only zone but we have plenty of deer where I hunt. They've been fed and didn't have much if any winter kill.

Interesting note. Last season the majority of deer brought into the local deer processor were bucks.

Can you give me a Unit # or general locale you hunt in? Feel free to PM me. I already have a spot picked out, so no worries with info. I haven't been able to make it since 2011 due to kids, etc. Just wondering...

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Surface Tension

uptracker, I started hunting in the 70's so I've witnesses the worst of times and the best of times. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought we'd ever see Intensive harvest(5 deer) up here so my perspective of what is plenty of deer is much different then someone else.

I sit back and bite my tongue when I read about APR, QDM, and the like.

Not enough deer, too many does, not enough older bucks, don't shoot small bucks, 50 deer per sq mile, and whatever else fits someone's agenda. In the end all it takes is a couple of killing winters to were sitting at Bucks Only Season. All that fuss about passing on young bucks or the doe to buck ratio is off and sort of all for not. At night I see bucks in the feeder that would never show themselves in daylight. Buck to doe ratios won't make them any less elusive. I hunt and live in a small pocket that didn't get hit hard by winter kill the last 2 winters. Reason being, supplemental feeding throughout the entire winter and till green up. I say supplemental because those deer still browse and travel. In a 1 sq mile I know of 4 places where deer are fed. Instead of yarding up and over browsing on a starvation diet they travel. Those routes have winter shelter, browsing, and bedding areas.

So using what I observe in this pocket isn't an indication of what the overall heard is doing. This isn't a deer hunters utopia by any means, only that the peaks and valleys are less. No public land close by but no shortage of hunters.

Still I see plenty of road kill or deer grazing the fields on my drives.

It isn't like driving the gauntlet with deer all over the roads but its not close to the what we had in the 70's either. That leads into DNR and deer management. Its a tough job and could never please everyone. I have no complaints there and never have. You can try and manipulate all you want but Winter has more effect on the overall deer density then anything else. We went from Intensive Harvest to Hunters Choice to Bucks only in a short time.

Lets see what happens this winter. After deer season I'll start feeding again till green up.

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leech~~

I say supplemental because those deer still browse and travel. In a 1 sq mile I know of 4 places where deer are fed. Instead of yarding up and over browsing on a starvation diet they travel. Those routes have winter shelter, browsing, and bedding areas.

How is the Wolf Pop, doing in these areas? Does sound kind of like a Wolf Utopia, having so much nice pickings in one area! wink

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leechlake

I think in most parts of Northern Minnesota the key to harvesting a deer is to hunt a lot and when/if you do see a deer make sure you get it on the ground. I've hunted since the early 80's up north and been successful many years even when the numbers are down. I'm not always a guy who stays on the stand all day but I'm out there enough to get luck on my side.

My nephews and their friends spend a lot of time back at the cabin and then grumble about not seeing or shooting a deer. In 34 years we've shot one deer back near the cabin (remote area). I've never had a deer sitting by me while watching a football game back at camp.

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leech~~

I've never had a deer sitting by me while watching a football game back at camp.

leechlake, you should start hunting at the Days Inn. You can still watch the game and not even get out of bed! grin

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Surface Tension

Persistence usually pays off.

Leech, not much wolf activity. We have one once in a while but they move through.

I could go a few miles away and see a lot more wolf sign.

I'd imagine they have easier pickings with stressed deer.

Again, its not like we have deer camped out in the yard. They browse their way in and out, stopping at the feeder for a short time meanwhile keeping their travel routes open.

There is some misinformation that deer eat their fill at feeders. They don't, they might eat a couple cups and they're off.

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uptracker

Thanks ST!

BTW, deer over here eat at a feeder for hours. I just went to my buddy's camp last week and I watched 10-12 deer eat at a feeder for over four hours without leaving. This was in the northern lower peninsula in MI. They ate until all the corn on the ground was gone and then attacked the rape. This was out the back door of a camp from 6pm until we went to bed.

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leech~~

Thanks ST!

BTW, deer over here eat at a feeder for hours. I just went to my buddy's camp last week and I watched 10-12 deer eat at a feeder for over four hours without leaving. This was in the northern lower peninsula in MI. They ate until all the corn on the ground was gone and then attacked the rape. This was out the back door of a camp from 6pm until we went to bed.

Remind him that he needs to remove his "bait" before hunting season! laugh

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uptracker

Leech, I had a big write up for you, but it was rejected due to the quote. Basically, it said I was in MI. Baiting is legal and near a camp/house is "recreational feeding". I know, I'm not into it either. It's the main reason I travel to hunt.

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leech~~

Leech, I had a big write up for you, but it was rejected due to the quote. Basically, it said I was in MI. Baiting is legal and near a camp/house is "recreational feeding". I know, I'm not into it either. It's the main reason I travel to hunt.

Dude, I was just pulling your chain! Feed on with the birdies! wink

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uptracker

Haha. It wasn't a negative write up towards you. Just how entrenched MI hunters have become with bait. I went to a farm with my buddy that weekend. Trucks were lined up for a scoop of beets at $30. Corn was $5. 200 miles north, in the UP, it's $80 a scoop and $11 for shelled corn. They sell the [PoorWordUsage] out of it. I trip over bait piles in the woods here... Makes me sick. I haven't gun hunted here in five years. Come the good rut bowhunting time, it coincides when thousands or bait piles are being established, guys out scouting for gun season and blind building. Tough to have a good hunt here.

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