How do you restrict buck harvest?

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JPH
 
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How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby JPH » Mon Nov 03, 2008 1:58 am

For those who QDM, how do you restrict your buck harvest for yourself and those who hunt in your land or in your club?

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shaman
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby shaman » Mon Nov 03, 2008 3:39 am

I answered "no restrictions."  I have two sons who are just getting started.  One has taken a button buck. The other is looking for his first.  I have a simple guideline that states:

"The buck you kill this season should be wearing a bigger rack than last year's."

That gets us all holding out for something bigger and passing on young bucks.  Kentucky Zone 1 currently has a 1 buck limit and unlimited doe harvest. If you nail a small buck, your dreams of big antlers will have to wait for next year.

If Mooseboy (16)nails the young 9-pointer he saw, no problem.  If Li'l Angus (10) bags a spike or a forker, that's cool too. If I stay within the family guideline, I'm going to have to shoot something in the 170-range this weekend. Probably what that means is that I'll hold off on any smaller  buck I see on Opening Weekend, and keep looking. If it gets into Weekend #2, and I'm looking at tag soup . . . we'll have to see.  

One other thing I've learned out of this shamanic guideline: it has a lot of unstated provisos, corallaries, and escape clauses.  For instance: 

[ul][*]It's got to be a BIG buck for me to bust a cap on anything when I'm sitting on a couple of my stands.  I'm frankly through schlepping does out of the lower elevations of our property. Our first two this year needed  to be carried less than 20 yards each to get to the truck.  Those are well trained deer.
[*]If the freezer fills up early, I doubt I will hunt seriously-- I've been through the  hassle of jamming the last package of vension into the freezer and then seeing the Big One on the next weekend.[*]Having nailed the 4 biggest bucks of my life in less than a total of 5 hours of totql hunting. I can tell you that sitting out the rest of 4 seasons as a spectator is a bummer. It has to be a BIG one now for me to bring the hammer down on a buck with only 10 minutes into the season.[*]If you do a mercy killing on a lesser buck, it resets the counter.  [*]I'm done having cuts done out of those big carcasses.  From now on, big bucks go into the grinder. I am going to have to think exactly how much sausage I want to eat before I flip the safety off. [/ul]I have 200 acres to hunt, well under the minimum for a QDM program.  However, between myself and one neighbor who owns 100 acres, we're doing our best to promote a healthy herd.  It would be ridiculous for us to be into a QDM program without a lot more cooperation, and I doubt we will ever get it. Doing our best to pass on the small ones, at least gives us a chance at nailing the bigger ones.
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Gafrage
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby Gafrage » Mon Nov 03, 2008 4:31 am

I answered Age.  If the deer is mature bone structure wise, I don't have a problem with some of my friends or relatives who hunt with me to take them out of the herd, regardless of their antler growth.  They are all pretty familiar that some of the deer get pretty good racks for being young and all.  So I try to shy away from antler score.  Most of my company that hunts with me is strictly archery or helping to thin out the doe herd during the late T-Zone hunt.  There are a couple of big bucks this year that have good width on their racks, but don't have the height in the tines.  It's hard to use a tag on a deer like that, since I know there are better bucks around and when the neighbors are shooting smaller bucks.  However, I am set on purchasing most of the land around where I hunt right now, so I consider what I'm doing is a jump start on the main goal.  Most of my neighbors are getting up in age, 65+.   I can't control what they do, but as far as the land I hunt on those are the rules I have for my company, and none of them have a problem with it.  If I had a child, or was trying to introduce someone to hunting(male or female), I'm sure my rules wouldn't apply for them under special circumstances, but since all of us are upper 20's to their early 60's (who hunt the land) I don't have to do that yet.

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ranwin33
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby ranwin33 » Mon Nov 03, 2008 4:56 am

I had to say B&C score since antler restrictions was not a choice.  Couldn't say age, as we've got an old six pointer running around with head gear larger than may 10 pointers I've seen.  I'd shoot him if I could, based upon age, but the law says no.
 
I would have liked to have added age, but I know my brother who hunts our property with me would not have much idea how old a buck is, so while one of us may look at that, the other does not.
“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
Aldo Leopold

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JPH
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby JPH » Mon Nov 03, 2008 6:53 am

ORIGINAL: shaman
I have 200 acres to hunt, well under the minimum for a QDM program.  However, between myself and one neighbor who owns 100 acres, we're doing our best to promote a healthy herd.  It would be ridiculous for us to be into a QDM program without a lot more cooperation, and I doubt we will ever get it. Doing our best to pass on the small ones, at least gives us a chance at nailing the bigger ones.


What ever made you think there was a minimum acreage for QDM involvement?

A landowner/steward can improve habitat, harvest more does, exercise some restraint on bucks and educate him/herself on 5 acres! That is QDM my friends.

I wish I had 200 acres to hunt and cultivate!

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69Viking
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby 69Viking » Mon Nov 03, 2008 7:24 am

My friends and I hunt 110 acres in Alabama and don't have any restrictions per say.  All the land around us is mostly leased out for hunting and we have no way to make arrangements with the out of state owners. 
 
I would say we go by a silent rule of 6 points or better on a buck that looks more than 2 years old.  My friends and I in general want to get a bigger deer every year for bragging rights.  I've only hunted the land for 4 years now and the biggest deer I saw and shot was a thick 6 point. 
 
We continue to improve the food plots on the land and on the land around us they have done a lot of clear cutting/logging so we're hoping that creates nice bedding areas with the regrowth and then our property will be the preferred food source in the center.  This year we have noticed quite an increase of deer on the property on our cameras so if all goes well the plan is working and we'll see bigger deer. 

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Goose
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby Goose » Mon Nov 03, 2008 3:26 pm

i chose age but would also add antler score. For myself i aim for a nice 2.5 or better. Haven't had the honor of wrapping my tags around too many bucks but  I will hold out for a 110-115" or better deer. Ive been passing up 1.5's for the last 8 years so Id like to get a couple more 2.5's under my belt before I move up to passing them up too. were i hunt my brother is just starting to pass up 1.5's and my dad will shoot any buck, and I will be happy as all get out for either one of them with whatever they choose to shoot.
Jake

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

schlupis
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby schlupis » Mon Nov 03, 2008 10:59 pm

I put down age. There are 6 of us hunting 200 acres and 3 of us will not shoot a deer under 3.5 yrs old and the other 3 will shoot anything that comes by but they dont make it to the stand that much. Only 2 of us bowhunt the property.
 
We tell anybody that hunts with us to shoot only bucks with atleast 8 points and the deer has to be atleast to the outside of the ears, and to shoot any doe they want. This is what is working for us and we are starting to see some real giants on the cameras.

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passin through
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby passin through » Tue Nov 04, 2008 1:53 pm

Nothing I saw there really fits us.  We have a program and it is working but age and score don't come into it ( unless you count the 2.5 year olds) then again, it all blends, sorta. 

This is our system:
With 58 memberships hunting approximately 10,000 acres we have 3 bucks allowed per family/membership.  Our minimums maintain that it must be a 6 point or better with at least 1" tines to count as a point.  If a guest kills a buck that comes from his/her sponsors total.  If a lesser buck is taken, then a buck is subtracted from the following years allocation to that membership.  Likewise if a membership has taken its three bucks and a true wall hanger walks out and that hunter still has a buck tag he is permitted to take the deer with no repercussions except losing a deer the next year.  We don't fine or anything else.  Everything is done on the honor system.  The plan has been in place about three years now as well as a greatly stepped up doe harvest and we a taking more 3.5's and 4.5's than we have since the club was incorporated.  Score's are climbing too with 4 140 plus bucks taken last year along with some other very nice bucks.  The trophy is in the eye of the beholder and we are liking what we are seeing so far.  Did not see anything close to this in the list but I know there are some clubs over on the Mississippi river doing about the same thing (except they fine as well as dock).

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shaman
 
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RE: How do you restrict buck harvest?

Postby shaman » Wed Nov 05, 2008 2:44 am

ORIGINAL: JPH

What ever made you think there was a minimum acreage for QDM involvement?

A landowner/steward can improve habitat, harvest more does, exercise some restraint on bucks and educate him/herself on 5 acres! That is QDM my friends.

I wish I had 200 acres to hunt and cultivate!


The general rule of thumb I've seen is 300 acres as a minimum for doing QDM.  The reason is that unless you have a piece of ground of reasonable size, there will be too much going on outside the boundaries of the managed area to effectively manage it. Chief among these is immature buck harvest by the neighbors.

If you sit on a plot of less than 300 acres, one of your first priorities should be enlisting the cooperation of the neighbors.  Larger than 300 acres, you can begin setting your own agenda.

I hunted 40-80 acre parcels most of my career.  I have hunted 5 and 20 acre parcels as well.  In each of those instances, there were not enough deer resident on the property to ensure that anyone could control the quality of the bucks.  If you passed on an immature buck the guy next door was probably going to harvest it.

I am actively managing a lot of things.  Chief among these is access to the property.  I have also done a lot of habitat improvement.  I have a deer sanctuary that draws deer from all the neighbors. When the shooting starts, they all run over to my place.  However, I know I can't personally control the antler growth on animals that may roam over 10-15 square miles during the breeding season.  All I can do is make my little 200 acre plot as inviting as possible and keep my does happy.

Antler growth has improved on my acreage over the past 8 seasons. However, I attribute that to several neighbor working independently to limit access to their properties.  When I moved in, my place was a free-for-all, and so was most of the adjoining properties.  About the same time I cracked down, new neighbors moved and they cracked down too. There are a lot fewer hunters in my part of the county now and it shows.  However, if things had stayed as they were and I was the only fellow doing my QDM thing, all I would have done would have been to let bucks pass for others to kill.

Starting out, I had no illusions of being able to do QDM.  My first couple of bucks taken on the property are evidence of that.  However, within 3 seasons, good deer started to show themselves under our stands.  It's funny, but our little bit of heaven still has the reputation of having no good bucks. Everyone says our ridge is "Full of does, and spikes, and not much more."   Shhhhh. Don't tell anyone.

Now, is that QDM?  I dunno.  To me it's just a city guy wanting a place for him and his kids to hunt.
Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries of SW Bracken County, KY
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