Jump to content

Deer numbers


Gill-T

Recommended Posts

Is it me or are there a lot less deer around this year?  We have had some really mild winters lately so there should be plenty. Is it CWD? COVID? Too many doe permits given out?  I see these hunting shows filmed out in the Midwest on the same looking farmland found around NY and they are hunting over 40 deer in a field late season. The deer out there don’t look famished so I doubt the carrying capacity is being encroached upon. Most states out west you get a buck tag and a doe tag. Easy. No complicating DMP zones. If it wasn’t for a breeding pair of foxes under my stand this evening tonight would have been a complete bust. I have skunked a TON this year and I am concerned. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I hunted kendal all yr. 1st yr I have ever got skunked. Saw and passed during bow. Never saw a deer during gun. People across st only took 3doe on over 250 acres. Neighbor next to me 80+ acres got skunked also. He said we have a yote problem. It is what it is. We didn't have any mass crop of nuts this yr to keep the deer around.

Sent from my SM-A326U using Lake Ontario United mobile app

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am a rural carrier and didn’t even see a deer on a  wonder what the increasevehicle this year..... and not many deer seen in fields while driving around the country side delivering mail....... I feel deer numbers are down....... could it be more hunters in the woods with the crossbows killing more deer?.... with no bow hunting Ed course needed...makes it easier for more hunters and kills.... 

  • Haha 1
  • Confused 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That is just it. Not seeing them in fields, not seeing many road kills, not on top of hunter cars and not many while hunting. It will be interesting to see the final numbers. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

This would be a good year for aerial surveys to make sure the DEC’s ten year plan isn’t going to be adversely affected by COVID.  I drove all around Skaneateles this evening at dusk and only saw a few deer around town. I am just not seeing them. USDA doesn’t really have evidence of clinical COVID significance in deer. 
 

https://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/one_health/downloads/qa-covid-white-tailed-deer-study.pdf

Edited by Gill-T
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So, from what I know, COVID doesn't have a clinical manifestation in deer. They can carry it, but don't suffer the consequences we do. And I haven't found any dead deer on my properties, despite lots of walking over the past year and a half. 

 

We saw and shot more deer this year than most. I've heard similar from a bunch of folks, but the opposite from others. It's seemed like quite the feast or famine out there. Certainly the wife and I saw ample tracks in the snow this afternoon at our Albion property, so they're still around. I suspect that the crazy wet year and lack of mast significantly impacted normal patterns. It's just so tough to tell what's going on from a single year's experience...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I drive past a bean field daily on the way to work. Over the last ten years I would see deer almost daily during the fall. Let’s say three days a week. This year I only saw a dozen deer in the field all year. Oddly, I saw more deer in my backyard this year then I have since we moved in.  Lots of oak and hickory behind the house. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Gator said:

So, from what I know, COVID doesn't have a clinical manifestation in deer. They can carry it, but don't suffer the consequences we do. And I haven't found any dead deer on my properties, despite lots of walking over the past year and a half. 

 

We saw and shot more deer this year than most. I've heard similar from a bunch of folks, but the opposite from others. It's seemed like quite the feast or famine out there. Certainly the wife and I saw ample tracks in the snow this afternoon at our Albion property, so they're still around. I suspect that the crazy wet year and lack of mast significantly impacted normal patterns. It's just so tough to tell what's going on from a single year's experience...


I remember your past year's struggles on this thread so it may be seasonal food shifts or the greater usage of food plots by the public. That is why an aerial survey would be helpful. I would think there would be federal funding through the USDA related to COVID studies. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I try to forget my past year's struggles as soon as they're over lol!

 

I keep photos of my DEC bowhunting log from forever, and my records show three weeks in October this year that rotted. This coincides with camera activity. Past years generally had more sightings, but less time overall in the woods too, so it's tough to compare, and there are always factors beyond the pale that impact perceived success. For example, last year during the peak rut it seemed like I couldn't sit in a stand without a neighbor shooting and tracking a deer right under me. Go figure. It's also easy after the season ends and the doe have herded up to have a skewed idea of numbers, particularly if you're on the best food source in town. I will be interested in seeing final harvest numbers from DEC, but even that doesn't tell the entire tale. How many of us here pass on bucks until we see our "shooter"?

 

The bowhunter sightings logs are at least unbiased in terms of your decision-making - it's based on how many of what fun loving deer you see while in the stand, on a per hour, per location basis. I have never tried to access that information myself though. Anybody else tried?

 

Edited by Gator
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, that's just funny. I've never tried to type the word S E X in a thread before, and it got changed to fun loving. Obviously I'm not referring to the act but the physical descriptor. Deer don't have gender, since they don't have self-perception, and so the S-word is appropriate. ROFL.

  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

This was a weirld hunting season.  I only had a few days hunting with snow on the ground.  When ther is no snow on the ground hunters see fewer deer.  When i did hunt on snow i saw plenty of deer and tons of tracks. No problem with deer numbers here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My worst season ever but not because of deer numbers.  No noticeable second rut (which IMO is good for herd health) and good afternoon browse near bedding areas.  I had no heavy snow to knock down golden rods so the deer had areas that they could bed in that in recent years they didn't have cover.  I am in the south eastern part of 8X.  I can say that neighbors who put the time in to make sure there was an excellent food source for afternoon did fine.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The numbers don’t get revealed until early spring. There have been rumors that deer numbers are down but I have not heard anything specific.  Hopefully this cold snap knocks tick populations down. 

Edited by Gill-T
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm new to Niagara county. Lived on our farm in central NY for 30 years prior. I found hunting public land out here very different than hunting my farm with all the treestands set up , etc. I saw less deer than I'm used to but hunting pressure on the public land was greater. After snow fell it was obvious the areas I was hunting had more deer than I thought. I put in a lot of time starting in September early season, through archery and on through the special late muzzle loader season and was able to fill all 5 tags in large part due to 1 lucky day w/ 2 deer taken but mostly due to doggedly putting in time and being careful about all the usual stuff. Probably get skunked next year LOL.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...