Author Archives: D&DH Editor Dan Schmidt

The more you know about deer densities, the better a land steward you will become. (Daniel Schmidt)

Always Stress Land Stewardship

Land management is fun, but it also comes with great responsibility. In our giddy enthusiasm to grow bigger and better deer, many hunters/landowners forget the founding tenant to sound whitetail management: responsible deer densities. A high abundance of white-tailed deer can create dramatic changes in forest understory that leads to irreparable harm to the...

A close-up at the whitetail's molting process. This doe is losing her winter coat - fast. She will soon don the clay-red hairs of summer. Stealth Cam photo by Daniel Schmidt)

Molting: When and Why Deer Lose Their Hair

If you have trail cameras out, you’ve probably noticed some really ratty-looking deer out there. I’ve received many inquiries here at D&DH, and the common question is: What’s wrong with the deer? There’s nothing wrong with them, actually. The annual molting process — the few weeks in spring when deer lose their thick fall...

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What’s the Best Caliber for Deer Hunting?

From today’s mail comes a question from Dave Roettger, a Deer & Deer Hunting subscriber who enjoys gun-hunting. Dave writes: “My wife and I purchased land in the Upper Peninsula. My son-in-law’s family lives and hunts across the road. My residence is in Sheboygan County, Wis., which does not allow rifle hunting. I would...

Loden Peil, 10, shot his first gobbler while hunting with his dad this morning. (photo by Daniel E. Schmidt)

Turkey Hunting Bonus: The Conversation

Allow for a slight diversion from the deer talk this week. This morning’s text volley between a long-time hunting buddy is too good not to share. My buddy Joe drove to my house yesterday for some last-minute turkey hunting action with his 10-year-old son, Loden. They spent the better part of this spring in...

Spook a buck one time, and he will most likely adopt nocturnal behavior for at least a little while.

Dan Schmidt: How Deer React to Human Pressure

Human pressure – be it from hunters, hikers or horse riders – is the No. 1 suppressor of daytime deer activity. Deer & Deer Hunting contributors Charlie Alsheimer and Vermont biologist Wayne Laroche have documented the extent of this suppressor during their ongoing study of how the moon affects deer behavior. Using trail timers...

Maryland deer poaching law

Stiffer Deer Poaching Law Sends Wrong Message

Your heart is in the right place, Maryland, but you got this one dead wrong. Earlier this week, the Maryland General Assembly passed a bill that will increase deer-poaching maximum penalties to $10,000 and 80 hours of community service. The caveat: IF the buck scores more than 150 inches on the Boone and Crockett...

Waupaca County, Wisconsin, is home to more than 60,000 whitetails. (photo by Dan Schmidt)

Top Deer Hunting County Residents Propose Earn-a-Buck

One of Wisconsin’s top deer hunting county’s might avoid an entire year of doe-only hunting after all. Residents of Waupaca County last night passed a floor resolution to work with the Wisconsin Legislature to craft an earn-a-buck law, with  the stipulation that EAB counties have mandatory in-person registration. The resolution was passed 39-36 on Monday...

In an attempt to manage its burgeoning whitetail herd, Waupaca County, Wisconsin, is proposing a doe-only hunting season this year. (photo by Dan Schmidt)

Best Deer Hunting County Proposes Buck Hunting Ban

Bless their hearts for trying, but a Wisconsin county’s proposed ban on buck hunting stands about as much chance of working as New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s proposal to ban large soft drinks. The deer hunting controversy arose last week when a 6-member council of deer enthusiasts proposed a doe-only season this year for...