Ever hunt the Assateague Refuge? - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-14-2019, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
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Ever hunt the Assateague Refuge?

Read about the hunts there for 40 years. Thinking about getting down there this fall
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-21-2019, 11:14 AM
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My grandparents have a beach house right off the island. Never hunted there but visit it frequently. Plenty of sika deer, waterfowl, and some whitetail. I'd imagine the mosquitoes and ticks would destroy you in the earlier seasons. In addition many of the areas don't seem very suitable for a tree stand, and the area is very wet so I'd be wearing hip boots.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-21-2019, 08:08 PM
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I've hunted on Assateague Island on the VA side on the NWF when they had controlled hunts there that you had to get drawn to hunt.

I haven't hunted the MD portion.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-21-2019, 08:44 PM
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I hunted from the duck blinds there a few times, did pretty well. Hunted Sitka deer once, no luck.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-21-2019, 08:50 PM
tdd
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I think I hunted Sika's 3 times. Maybe 4. Several different hunt dates and zones, from The Hook up to the MD border, and a few in between.

I only got into deer once, when we pulled a slot for the 1st 2-day hunt of the year in the zone that's in the park wildlife loop. I think 4 of us killed 8-9 deer that trip. It was a blast.

Hunting later in the hunt dates was usually not productive. The sika are good at disappearing.

Now they no longer do a lottery for the hunts as of a few years ago. Now it's limited to a number of total hunters, but I think it's a first-come-first-served basis, so it's not worth the expense and drive down to fight over who gets there first. I feel like there's too much risk of not hunting or getting a bad hunt area to be worth the cost and time involved.

When the hunts were on a draw basis, it was a fun trip though.

Sika are essentially miniaturized elk. They bugle, have antlers similar to elk, and their meat is extremely similar to elk.

The problem is a BIG mature stag is like 75-80 lbs on the hoof. I shot a 1.5 yr old hind that they told me could be the biggest they'd check that hunt, and she was 49lbs dressed.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 08:16 PM
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My aunt has a place also just off the island, might be the same place as KeystoneMA, as they are also from Lititz, have seen a lot of sika and big whitetails there.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 10:16 PM
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Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 10:37 PM
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Bugs hunted me. Skeeters were terrible.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 01:53 PM
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If you hunt down this way, any early season you will need a thermacell. Without one you will get eaten alive. It doesn’t bother the game at all. For chiggers spray down with permethrin. It also works to prevent ticks from attaching to clothing. If you don’t spray down, you will regret it bc chiggers are horrible and usually you will get eaten up this early in the year. After a frost, chiggers arnt much of a problem.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by missedshed View Post
If you hunt down this way, any early season you will need a thermacell. Without one you will get eaten alive. It doesnít bother the game at all. For chiggers spray down with permethrin. It also works to prevent ticks from attaching to clothing. If you donít spray down, you will regret it bc chiggers are horrible and usually you will get eaten up this early in the year. After a frost, chiggers arnt much of a problem.
Amen to that. Assateague was one of the most intense mosquito experiences I've ever experienced, and chiggers...if I never get bitten by a horde of those awful things again in my life it will be too soon. They give you the worst itching you will ever feel in your life! Do whatever it takes to mitigate that nightmare.
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