locknload wrote:MD Lease wrote:This Pensylvania forum sucks!! All anybody does on here is either bash the Game Commission or talk about doe licenses. It's embarassing to be from Pennsylvania on here.
this is an older thread but worth revisiting due to recent trends....
there's nothing wrong with the forum, but Pa. deer hunting has some serious issues at the present time. I live and hunt in WMU 3D and the hunting has become progressively worse each passing year- and I'm not the only one who sees, we are paying the PGC money for licenses, to hunt deer that don't exist. 1 out of 100 hunters get deer in the gamelands, they are EMPTY of game. All the good hunting land is tied up as private land. The local banks, builders, realtors RUINED this WMU, by jumping on the housing bubble bandwagon, that burst terribly in 2008. Now all those homes sit with no buyers, and the habitat is gone. How would you like to sit in your stand for 4 hours, see nothing, then go home and see a 6 pointer and 8 pointer in your back yard, eating your table scraps- year after year- in a housing development that grew from 435 homes in 1994, to 1,000 homes in 2012, many of which are now up for sale and in foreclosure, or abandoned.
The PGC has mismanaged the deer herd terribly, per below:
1. Pa now. has a 6 week bow and inline muzzleloader season, just before the rifle season. Many of the bowhunters are not using SCOPED CROSSBOWS, just as deadly in brush as a Winchester 94 30-30, and maybe even more accurate. Most of the big bucks get knocked off before the rifle season even opens, when their stupid chasing doe in the rut.
2. PGC is issuing doe tags like candy. I know quite a few hunters that get 3 tags without hardly trying. In the old days pre-1980, it was hard to get ONE doe tag. Every doe shot, kills 3 deer, the doe and the 2 fawns it would have next year. Wake up hunters, at this rate, there will be no deer herd left.
3. PGC is in bed with the Pa. insurance companies, to wipe out the deer herd, and cut down on deer hits- so the insurance co.'s have to fix less cars, and save millions $$$. Just follow the money.
4. I remember seeing lines of 12-14 deer running through the woods in the late-1970's. Now a "large" herd is 4-5 deer.
5. Traveling to distant WMU's just to shoot a whitetail, is NOT WORTH IT. The cost of fuel, food, boarding, plus licenses, etc. then cost to process the meat, makes a deer hunt in some far off WMU, cost nearly $600-$1,000. If I'm going to spend that much, may as well charter an elk hunt to Colorado and have some real hunting, camp kitchen, guide, horse, etc.
PGC needs to wake up and stop taking our money to hunt deer that don't even exist. I know many more hunters QUITTING than I do new hunters trying it for the first time. Does the PGC even care ?
They need to give the private landowners some incentive to open their land again, to hunting. The only way one can have a high degree of success in WMU 3D is:
1. Buy/own your own parcel of land, 30+ acres, preferably 100+ acres, and when the property tax bill comes due every year, to support the local counties and school districts, you'll realize it's not worth owning the land just to hunt deer on.
2. Know someone else who owns 30+ acres and gives you permission to hunt on it- and preferably 100 acres, because the remaining deer are so heavily pressured, they are quite smart and are now looking up into trees, and avoid ladder tree stands with platforms, that are 25 feet high.
3. Be one of the lucky ones that gets a deer on gamelands, if you can dodge all the bullets that fly by, when a deer may happen to run through there. On first day I counted 45 cars parked at the local gamelands. Some cars had 4 people per car. Imagine hunting with 200 guys on property. It's like a war if a deer does show up. I also know a few people that quit hunting because bullets whizzed past their heads, while sitting in tree stands. I can go on, but will stop there. Well one more- 2 days ago hunters shot and wounded a doe near my home in the safety zone, and when local residents emerged from their homes to take a look, the hunters ran and abandoned the deer. These same hunters left a dead doe elsewhere in the area.
that's because there's no deer in the woods, and the deer hang out in the housing projects, and hunters are coming closer and closer, trying to get one.
PGC, WAKE UP !!
You should wake up too
1. I do not know what point you are trying to make, but most states have archery before gun. People that responsibly use crossbows have just as much right as anyone else.
The crossbows allow more people to archery hunt, so they too can have a chance at those bucks. The archery hunters that kill big bucks deserve them for the amount of time and effort they put into it, same as rifle hunters deserve a buck they have worked hard for.
2. They are issuing more doe tags, but that was to reduce the deer numbers for the overall health of the deer and the forests. I wont deny that maybe in some places they took it a little too far, but they are adjusting accordingly.
3. Show me the proof. Why wipe out the deer? Deer hunting drives license sales, without license sales there would be no PGC. You are saying they are working themselves out of a job?
4. 4-5 deer is good, 12-14 is way over the carrying capacity for even the best land.
5. I take 1 and a half weeks to hunt Ohio and Indiana, usually straight thru. I have never spent 1000 dollars and thats buying two $150 tags. Are the hotels, gas, food and processing fees that much cheaper in those states?
I know hunters that did not hunt these past two years because they changed the first week of rifle to buck only.. So no matter what you do, people are going to get upset and quit hunting.
It would be nice to have more private land owners open there land up, but at least around where I hunt, the reason most of them are closed to hunting is because hunters have abused the land and made it not worth it for hte land owners to allow hunting.
The statement about people quiting hunting because of close encounters with bullets has been going on forever.. Not just since the deer season changed.
Deer all over the country are smart, not just PA deer. The deer I hunt in MD, OH, IN and any other state I hunt are just as smart as deer in PA. I will agree that the PA deer are more pressured than these other states, but you can still outsmart them and kill one. You just have to hunt harder, put more time in scouting. If you enjoy hunting, you should enjoy scouting.
45 cars is a lot. I have never seen that. Although where we hunted in MD this year, state park, There was 15 cars in the parking lot, way more than we expected. They were there to hunt, just like me. I adapted to the pressure and was able to come home with a buck.
There is no excuse for slob hunters that shoot a deer and knowingly leave it. That will be anywhere you go tho.
Deer do hang out near neighborhoods, always have. Deer are still in the big woods, just have to hunt a little harder. There is no doubt that killing a mature buck in PA is an accomplishment no matter where or how you kill it.
Thats not because of low numbers tho, that is because of high hunter numbers. Pressure is huge, there is nothing you can do about that. I would rather have healthy deer than lots of deer. I can see it being hard for a younger hunter to really get the itch when there is no doubt less deer in the woods than before, but they will learn to "hunt" from an early age if they stick with it, rather than sit just seeing hoards of deer running around, learning to shoot.
We bought the tags, we shot the deer, end of story. The PGC is trying to make a healthy deer population, for the deer and for the forest. In a state like this, with 750,000 hunters and before when hunter numbers were close to 1 million, this is no doubt a daunting task. I applaud them for making strides, adapting and doing the best they can for the hunter and the game.
I hate to call people out, especailly on the internet and by no means do I want you to think that I dont respect your views, I just feel like most PA hunters need to sit back and look at the big picture.
I question it myself, especially when I go to states with a fraction of the deer hunters we have and they seem to have a good handle on it... but PA is diverse and I would rather this approach than the one we had before.
In region B of MD, where I was hunting this year.. Archery limits for doe was
The skills I have learned here have helped me tremendously. I feel I am far better hunter than before, because you have to work so hard to kill a deer.
There will be days on end, when I see NOTHING in the woods. Discouraging, yes.. mad at PGC for my lack of deer, no. I work harder and when I do kill one, it makes it that much better!