Aging Does

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JPH
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby JPH » Mon Jan 12, 2009 1:33 pm

ORIGINAL: JPH

This brings us to the next question. Once you guesstimate a doe's age, what do you do with that info? Do you shoot old, young or a combination? Does it matter?

QDM types are fairly uniform on the need to protect yearling bucks, and many of us agree that protecting 2.5 and even 3.5 y.o. bucks is great when you can get away with it. But the question of how to use age when harvesting does is the subject of considerable discussion.

I am of the opinion that this is highly dependant on the herd and the habitat. All the more reason to do your homework and evaluate everything. How about the rest of you? 


Good replies, but when I re-read my post, I realize that it was a major hijack. Sorry 'bout that Demoderby4.

I don't want discourage anyone from continuing to respond to the OP.

msbadger
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby msbadger » Mon Jan 12, 2009 2:30 pm

JPH..good point as well should start that post..in meantime I just hate taking doe with twins and triplets or the lead doe in a group...they set the herd routes sometimes for years and if I've set up based on movement I don't want to disrupt that movement...

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reeper0697
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby reeper0697 » Mon Jan 12, 2009 4:05 pm

I usually do what everyone else said and look at neck, body size, nose/head. We usually try to take older dry does that dont have fawns. (we shoot does early in the season b/c come rifle season here in NY we dont always get a Doe Management Permit, dont get me started on that subject) I remeber while watching a hunting show Mr.Whitetail said the best doe to take is that one you are able to shoot. I was actually surprised in people saying to shoot younger does. Is there any reason to this?
Put me on a mountain, way back in the backwoods
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Put me around a campfire cookin' something I just cleaned

msbadger
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby msbadger » Mon Jan 12, 2009 11:41 pm

Wow reeper...send your DEC  unit manager our way...because I got 6 doe tags this year...1..8X....3..8N...and the two you can get signed over....8N was a slaughter...in our area

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Goose
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby Goose » Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:37 am

JPH has a good example of this so Ill let him tell ya his thoughts.
I personally have 2 opposite lands to hunt. One is well populated with does and I wouldn't be afraid to take any.
The other piece it seems as though the bucks outnumber the does 2 to1 so I would hesitate to take a mature doe out of the herd. If you need a earn-a-buck sticker or something on that order I would be better off taking a doe fawn.
The reason I said doe fawn in my earlier post is because it varies so much on each property that if you told me I had to shoot a doe it would be a doe fawn simply because I think that would cause the least amount of damage to the local herd.
Just my 2 cents
Jake

Genesis 27:3 Take your bow and quiver full of arrows out into the open country, and hunt some wild game.....

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JPH
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby JPH » Tue Jan 13, 2009 3:26 am

ORIGINAL: reeper0697
I was actually surprised in people saying to shoot younger does. Is there any reason to this?


I hunt one farm that is overpopulated and I will shoot any doe that steps in my sights and focus on older does when possible.

But I own a property that is a different story. It is a woodlot that has excellent habitat but is very small. The deer density is moderate. It will usually hold one matriarchal doe and her family group every season. I have killed the old doe and seen a disruption of the deer herd that took over a year to recover from. Now I focus on skimming the younger does from the herd, rather than taking the biggest doe and changing the dynamic.

I will keep an eye on things. If I see the population begin to climb up, or see more than one old grandma using the place, I 'll try to kill one. But for now it's yearlings and fawns if I can help it.

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reeper0697
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby reeper0697 » Tue Jan 13, 2009 3:44 am

Msbadger,
 
I hunt in 6A. Due to the whole preference point thing I usually get a DMP every 3 years. I wish they would hand out more for this area. My uncle usually gets a DMP every year since he owns a chunk of land. I usually take does with my bow or muzzleloader since those are the only time I can. unless he signs his DMP over so I can fill it. One of my friends called me up b/c they were giving out doe tags for downstate, Both of us got 2 for 8H but never got a chance to get down there.
Put me on a mountain, way back in the backwoods
Put me on a lake with biggin' on the line
Put me around a campfire cookin' something I just cleaned

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reeper0697
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby reeper0697 » Tue Jan 13, 2009 3:57 am

JPH,

I guess it depends on what your deer herd is like. Here there are so many does to bucks. I usually try to take old dry does since they arent producing fawns yet still eating food that supports good breeding does and bucks. In my area I see a decent amount of does without fawns in the spring.

While on stand this year I actually had a buck harassing I will call a "teenage" doe and had 2 fawns and a big old doe walk right by my stand and eat. Could the big doe eventually or already go into estrous? probably but I was never there to witness it. I will also add there were were a few other deer out in the swamp but could not see what they were. As a hunter we can only be in the wood for such a small portaion of the day.

As for hunting a smaller chunk of land I never though about how taking one grandma would disrupt a herd, and I understand what you mean. I am fortunate enough to hunt a big enough chunk of property with land on both sides of the road. Even though the younger does have been taugh to use the same routes as grandma, some for a few years, really stopped using the trails they had been using all their lives? It seems like they would be happy to eat in peace rather than getting kicked for what grandma wanted to eat[:D]
Put me on a mountain, way back in the backwoods
Put me on a lake with biggin' on the line
Put me around a campfire cookin' something I just cleaned

Demoderby4
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby Demoderby4 » Tue Jan 13, 2009 5:33 am

ORIGINAL: JPH

ORIGINAL: JPH

This brings us to the next question. Once you guesstimate a doe's age, what do you do with that info? Do you shoot old, young or a combination? Does it matter?

QDM types are fairly uniform on the need to protect yearling bucks, and many of us agree that protecting 2.5 and even 3.5 y.o. bucks is great when you can get away with it. But the question of how to use age when harvesting does is the subject of considerable discussion.

I am of the opinion that this is highly dependant on the herd and the habitat. All the more reason to do your homework and evaluate everything. How about the rest of you? 


Good replies, but when I re-read my post, I realize that it was a major hijack. Sorry 'bout that Demoderby4.

I don't want discourage anyone from continuing to respond to the OP.


no prob JPH :) im glad this post is just focusing on does in anyway, i know a lot of the time people get caught up in just focusing on bucks when really does are just as important to focus on for QDM and maintaining a healthy herd. I haven't been on much in the last few days, school has started back up :( but im trying to keep up, this topic is very interesting to me!!

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Patriot
 
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RE: Aging Does

Postby Patriot » Tue Jan 13, 2009 6:59 am

My area is considered a lottery zone....meaning one deer per season per hunter regardless of weapon.  We can still party hunt, meaning we can use other hunter's tags on our deer.

Anyway, I would shy away from intentionally shooting a fawn on my property.  This is mainly since they don't have much meat on them for the freezer and I have limited tags.  I do think for QDM purposes it makes sense in certain situations to shoot the doe fawns.
Paul K. "aim small, miss small"
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