Author Topic: How can we improve our bucks?  (Read 2066 times)

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Offline charles p

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How can we improve our bucks?
« on: August 09, 2009, 03:56:06 PM »
Very few areas on NC have trophy bucks.  What do you think the state wildlife people could do to our regulations to improve our herd?  I hunt in the east where dog hunting is allowed.  It's my opinion that many dog hunters shoot every deer they see, and certainly every buck they see.  Hard to get an old buck under these circumstances.  Maybe the season should be shortened.  I think more hunters might even (hurry up)  shoot does if the season was not so long.

What are your opinions?

Offline bowhunter27295

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2009, 04:42:01 PM »
Boy, is this gonna stir the pudding!

1.  One buck limit with four point minimum on at least one side.
2.  Unlimited does.
3.  No baiting. Food plots allowed. Seed will provide a lot more food than a bag of corn and a lot more nutrition.
4.  Big fines and suspensions for breaking any of these rules.

Implement this for a five year period and reevaluate.  Simply look at the other states that do the above things mentioned (Ohio, Illinois, Iowa).  I don't see people coming to NC for the big deer.  VA has big deer and they have a pretty strict season and regs in most parts.  All I'm saying is, we have a pretty crappy deer herd in relation to other states and drastic changes require drastic measures if you want quality results.

Offline charles p

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2009, 06:06:36 AM »
I would support these suggestions.  What do you think about dog hunting and season length?

Offline Empty Quiver

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2009, 12:25:56 PM »
Dog hunting during the month of Feb.

Don't shoot the small bucks, in a couple of years all those bucks will be that much larger. Instead implement a earn a buck program for some one who insists on taking smaller bucks. Doe tags are $5 buck tags are $45, use this system for a few yrs to get the buck age structure and buck to doe ratio in line.
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Offline charles p

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2009, 04:28:38 PM »
Don't understand dog hunting in February.  Deer have no antlers then and does are pregnant.  What would this solve other than to have dog hunting and still hunting in different months.  Just eliminate dog hunting.  They don't practice any quality deer management - they just shoot deer.

Offline bowhunter27295

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2009, 04:25:34 PM »
To continue stirring the pudding, eliminate dog hunting.  It is fun because I have done it, but for anything resembling management, dog hunting has to be eliminated. This is just MY opinion.

Also, suspend hunting in the last two weeks of November. This will allow all of the big bucks to breed without being vulnerable.

Offline Empty Quiver

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2009, 04:54:02 PM »
Well I said Feb precisely because there are no racks then. If you truly enjoy dogs and venison then there is opportunity to get out and enjoy the outdoors. A dead doe isn't going to be bearing any fawns if it happens in November either.
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Offline j104wd

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2009, 11:57:33 AM »
Hate to burst your bubble about dog hunters not doing any management. We do, pull jaw bones record weights for state biologist. not to mention the fact that we have 6000 acres we maintain for deer hunting. Food plots, feeders, and timber management. The fact is we do have big deer its just a matter of the land you are hunting on. as far as the state is concerned if you limit the bucks to one or two you wont have to set point restrictions because people are more likely to wait for a larger buck. Getting the population down will help in some areas with herd quality but just too many variables for different regions of the state.

Offline mcwoodduck

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2009, 12:20:12 PM »
I hunt in the east too.  Just outside of Oriental NC.  I'll be there in November.
I think a 4 point min would help.  With spikes allowed for Jr. licenses.
Our farm gets hunted a lot and with the 5 to 6 deer a license the bucks get thinned out quickly.  We have posted signs and still the "club" will hunt our property.
I took a great 8 pointer out of a friends duck impoundment.  he does not allow other hunters into his property and mostly he hunts birds and ducks on the river so there is little hunting pressure on the bucks.  They are allowed to get old.  I would guess he was 4 to 6 years old and the rest I have seen are a year, three tops.  The heavy dog hunting has also made the deer go nockternal.  I think if you pick a spot where there is food back in the woods or on the edge of a cut over and sit still for the hours of 11 to 2 you may see more and bigger deer.

I also have noticed that the guys running dogs usually have a lunch break and I have seen larger buck moving around then.  i have also sat and watched a couple deer being chased by a dog loop around a tree at a slow pace, the dog was about 5 min behind the deer, and as then jump off the track and just walk away.  the dog came up barking hit the loop and went around it a few times and then had a puzzled look on his face as he looped around again, I guess he was smelling his own trail.  then the dumb mut saw me and I had a buddy for the rest of the afternoon till I dumped him off with one of the hunters in the club.
Our deer population has gone down since Dad had them harvest the harwoods on the farm and he planted pine.  Good Oak or pecan groves will help hold deer as well.

Offline handi243

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2009, 10:40:21 AM »
must kill 2 does to earn a buck tag
1 buck per hunting year
buck must be outside the ears
the biggest problem here is the age buck have to have age to have the larger horns
the food is there think about it look at texas
im in eastern nc i have a trailcam pic of a buck with at least 18-20" inside spread i have been watching him grow for the last 3 years on my farm its lots of food, water, and best of all NO one hunts it but me. i hunt it VERY little. he may screw up and get killed but i have been trying to get him up in age.

Offline SHOOTALL

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2009, 10:55:33 AM »
Many great ideas that will work if you can stop the illegal kills . I our area the game warden says the illegal kill is equal the legal kill .
If ya can see it ya can hit it !

Offline Graybeard

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2009, 11:01:04 AM »
Not everyone has the same goals nor will they ever. Some merely want the meat and could care less about the size of rack on them. Such are not inclined to turn down a chance to take a deer when it's offered the old "if it's brown it's down" slogan. They aren't wrong just take a different view of hunting than those wanting to hunt for large racks.

The real key to bigger racks is letting the bucks live to grow them. If folks could/would learn to age deer on the hoof and let them walk if under 3.5 years of age then there would be lots more large racks out there. That's fine for those after large racks but as I said not everyone cares and just offering more doe tags isn't really the answer to such folks as they might not see a doe only those young bucks and besides young bucks really are the easiest to shoot as they are the dumbest.

I'm for letting everyone decide for themselves what they want to take and control population via limits based on science not trophy goals or whatever else might crank someone's tractor.


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Offline Dixie Dude

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2009, 11:06:16 AM »
I've seen bucks in the deep south with racks still on in February.  I know it doesn't happen up north, but if we have a mild winter sometimes the does don't go in heat until December or January.   

Offline hunt-m-up

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #13 on: September 30, 2009, 12:08:08 PM »
Just some thoughts:
Stop gun hunting during the rut. The closest we come is an early muzzleloader season in late Oct, that still somewhat protects the bucks because the corn is not usually harvested yet and you have to catch them coming to/from the standing corn. This gives them a chance to pass along genetics and they're not quite as wacky when the shotgun hunters start running them. Not sure about your gun seasons, but ours are short, we run split shotgun seasons in December, one is a weekend and three days, the other is two weekends and the week in between.

Limit the buck tags and increase doe tags.

Not sure of your situation but many areas could improve their nutrition. I was on public ground Saturday that had acorns,alfalfa, beans(soybeans) and corn all within about a 100 yards of each other and water was less than a 1/4 mile away. Most good deer places around here, public and private, will have a similiar mix,maybe minus the acorns or alfalfa.

In IA we don't have antler point restrictions

Genetics plays an important part also, I can't tell you the last time I saw a spike here. They go from button bucks to forkhorns,sometimes small 6's.

Change the mentality(good luck), once they start seeing the bigger bucks from it, they'll hold out for better ones.
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Offline mcwoodduck

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2009, 09:48:53 AM »
must kill 2 does to earn a buck tag
1 buck per hunting year
buck must be outside the ears
the biggest problem here is the age buck have to have age to have the larger horns
the food is there think about it look at texas
im in eastern nc i have a trailcam pic of a buck with at least 18-20" inside spread i have been watching him grow for the last 3 years on my farm its lots of food, water, and best of all NO one hunts it but me. i hunt it VERY little. he may screw up and get killed but i have been trying to get him up in age.
NC produces a bunch of deer.
Licenses are 2 buck, 2 doe and one or two option tags.
Cuttin the deer tags in half would hurt.
A friend does not buy beef with the deer he shoots.

Offline billy_56081

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2009, 09:59:44 AM »
The key to bigger bucks is to let them grow up. A point restriction does let a few of the smaller ones slip by, but alsot it allows people to kill the cream of the 1.5 year old crop. Killing a 1.5 year old that has 4 points on one side or more will hurt the really big class of bucks in the future. Sad part about it is that you cannot legislate smart hunting practices. Shooting a 2 or 3 year old with less than 4 points on either side will do alot of good in the future.
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Offline handi243

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #16 on: October 05, 2009, 09:23:16 AM »
im not saying 3 deer total what im saying is 2 does first one buck. I talk to dog hunters who will not shoot a doe but will shoot 10 bucks a year.

Offline SHOOTALL

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #17 on: October 05, 2009, 09:26:43 AM »
243 sounds like around here .
If ya can see it ya can hit it !

Offline Idaho_Elk_Huntr

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #18 on: November 22, 2009, 08:18:16 AM »
I from the east and when I was there it was a brown its down attitude. Nothing escaped. button bucks, spikes, does and even spotted fawns. Here its one deer per season so people get picky and they have a chance to grow up. Its not to uncommon to shoot a buck where I am with 275 body weight and a rack to go with it.

Offline bigbuckdown280

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2009, 01:42:56 AM »
We've been managing about 3000 acres around the Pinehurst area for several years with good results. We shoot does, shoot does, and shoot more does. The buck to doe ratio is out of whack terribly in most areas of NC. Its not in a deer's genetic make-up to grow non-forked antlers. If you are seeing cowhorns on your property chances are it is not poor genetics, its the fact that the herd has exceeded the carrying capacity of the land. Two things help cure that......Food plots and shooting does. Try planting chickory. The deer love it and its very nutritional. We have started killing 120" deer pretty much every year. 120" in alot of places isn't much, but for NC I consider it exceptional. I was fortunate enough to kill a 139" 10pt a few years ago off the property and we have pics and sheds off of several that will be in the 150's. This is just my 2 cents but its working for us. Hunt with the wind in your favor and good luck!!!!!
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Offline slim rem 7

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2009, 12:23:31 PM »
 ive never seen more than a 4 point buck while walking out back of my house in the woods.. the fella that hunts it every day takes anysize buck he sees and does also....i think hes selling deer meat.. hes sure can t be reporting them an tagging them..i guess the law don t apply to him..i ike to stay outa folks buisiness but i can stoppim an may yet....slim

Offline D Boone

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2009, 03:11:01 PM »
I would say half of the deer shot don't get registered in my area.  We do have too many does, and anything with antlers is shot on  site.  That being said, I saw at least 5 of the biggest deer I have ever seen on the farm I hunt before the season, all out in the field around a handful of does digging up sweet potatoes.  Season starts, and they go nocturnal.  Most of the east is or has been cutover and planted in pines, at least my area, and the big ones hide in the cuts, only come out at night.  All interesting comments though, we know we have too many does, but I can only eat so much deer meat in a year.

Offline Mack in N.C.

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2010, 08:01:38 PM »
not telling anyone here something new but all yallknow there are 3 things that contribute to bigger racks.......
age , nutrition and genetics.  however the order you wish to put them in.......nc has too many deer...
guys still dont shoot enough does.....me probaly included...
age and nutrition we can manipulate but one thing we in nc will never have no matter how bad yall want it is alot of b/c bucks......we cant compete with georgia or othwer southern states as we do not have the genetics.......our deer are our deer......we never brought deer in from wisconsin like georgia did or other southern  states bringing in the northern woodland deer to interbreed with our whitetails.......nc let its scattered deer herds repopulate by natural dispersion and the commision did relocate alot of animals but they were all nc deer............genetics aint here............145 is my biggest...and i will be darned lucky to get a biggerone.....mack

Offline Ron 1

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #23 on: November 02, 2010, 12:40:22 AM »
is a big old buck say 4 or 5 year old 10 or 12 point a good eater?or is it a good wall hanger?
our family of 6 ate 5 deer last year and guess it to be the same this year.
so i tend to try to get younger better eaters 1 to2 year olds and does
i do still look for that big old tough 12 pointer and i will shoot if i see him. but he will only make burger.
the only beef we get is at mc donalds (is it real beef anyway)
happy huntin and good luck to all legal hunters and to the poachers i hope you all get cought ;D
 to improve the bucks report all poachers alot of them go for the rack and back strapes. there is my .02 cents
          rw
A man with a briefcase can steal millions more than any man with a gun. - Don Henley

Offline charles p

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #24 on: November 02, 2010, 04:51:24 PM »
Pulling jaw bones and reporting all kills is fine.  Passing on smaller bucks is better.  I have been a member of three dogs clubs and none passed shots at young bucks.  Still hunting groups like I belong to now, often fine their members for shooting young bucks.  Passing up small bucks is the only path to obtaining a larger class of deer in eastern NC.  It's much easier to judge a buck when it is not being run full speed by a pack of dogs.

Offline SHOOTALL

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Re: How can we improve our bucks?
« Reply #25 on: November 03, 2010, 04:06:33 AM »
short ansewer is don't shoot um till they get big . A very hard thing to do for many. We have that problem in our club - I pay so i will take anything legal. They are the first to complain about never shooting a big buck. and the world goes round !
If ya can see it ya can hit it !