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post #1 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
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Deer Population question

I've got a question that I don't know there is a real answer for, but here it is.

As an average hunter I can go for a long time without actually pulling the trigger on a deer, but I do like knowing I have a good chance of seeing some. If I see 1-3 deer on most of my hunts, and sometimes see 8, 10 or more depending on conditions (knowing there will be some days of no deer sightings) I'm a pretty happy guy.

Now here's the question. What type of deer population per square mile does it take so the average hunter would have that type of hunting?

Do you think that is asking too much with our current deer management plan, or do you think that is within reason?
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post #2 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 07:13 PM
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Re: Deer Population question

I am amazed that with all the x spurts (in Algebra, x is the unknown quantity. In plumbing, a spurt is a drip under pressure) who post here nobody has taken a stab at this one. What you are describing is about what my hunting is like in Somerset County. I have tried to estimate what our population is and the best I can come up with is about 20 deer per square mile. Don't know if I am an "average" hunter or not. And no, I don't think that is asking too much in most areas of the state where the habitat can support that many deer. Based upon the condition of the habitat where I hunt, our area could possibly support a few more than it has now. Anyone else care to chime in?

Some of the days this past fall I saw ten or more deer. Some days none. On average I would say I saw about three or four per day.
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post #3 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 07:23 PM
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Re: Deer Population question

NOt algebra, but simple math.

If hunter walks 1 mile, and can see everything with 75 yds on either side of him, AND assuming all deer stay put in that 150 yd wide swath, the hunter will have only hunted about 55 acres in that one mile walk.

Fifty five acres, is less,than one TENTH of a square mile.

If a hunter sits in a treestand and can see in a 150 yd circle around him, he is looking at only 3.6 acres.



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post #4 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 07:46 PM
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Re: Deer Population question

True facts, but now to his question. How many deer per square mile are necessary for our "average" hunter to see 1-3 a day? I think you bring up an interesting point. I based my sightings on days when I hunted mostly from stands. On days I did a walkabout I saw a lot more deer, but mostly tails. If one wants to see deer, he needs to either be sitting on a corridor where they always go through or move around a bit.

Don't know what it is like where either of you hunt, but there are very few places where I could walk a mile and see 75 yards on both sides even most of the way. Might have been able to do that ten years ago, but now now.

One method of seeing more deer is to do pushes. On the first Saturday of rifle season I did two pushes for the guys. On the first one I pushed out a patch of laurel about 200 yards wide and Dave saw ten does and one buck.
Later I pushed out a larger patch of laurel for my other buddy Larry and he saw five does. Seems to me that after the first week or so of shooting the does and bucks both like nasty cover. If I had tried to push out big timber the results might not have been as good. Of course all of the above is contingent upon finding that guy who likes to bust through thick and nasty laurel, right?
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post #5 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Deer Population question

Great info Mutt, please send GPS numbers to your stand sites

Seriously though, that 20 dpsqm seems to be reasonable depending on the habitat.
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post #6 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 07:51 PM
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Re: Deer Population question

17-22 deer/sq. mile which is higher than the number where I hunt in 4D. If you are patient and have the time to stay put, you will eventually see deer.(if you've scouted the area and know the deer are there)

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post #7 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 07:59 PM
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Re: Deer Population question

I agree, there really are few places, that I hunt, that I could see 75 yds on both sides. I was using it to ilustrate to others that they really hunt a VERY small area when they go for a "walkabout".

IMO, 20DPSM will not get you 3-4 deer sightings per day. 20 dpsm is one deer per 32 acres. So, you'd have to hunt, or see, 120 acres to see that many deer, assuming all the deer in that area stood still fer ya, which they don't. Of course, I'm assuming you are the lone hunter in the area and the deer are not effected by anyone but you.

IMO, for a hunter to see 10 deer per day, in general, requires a deer herd that probably will far exceed 20 dpsm.



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post #8 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 08:06 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Deer Population question

Does the 90/10 principal work here? (90% of the deer are in 10% of the habitat)
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post #9 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 08:06 PM
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Re: Deer Population question

I will relate this. I was told by a very reliable source, that a group of hunters put on some drives in Potter County, state forest DMAP areas. They put on 6 drives. They put out 90 antlerless and 15 bucks.

A friend that has a camp adjacent to where one of these drives was done, swears there are "no deer" in the area.

My brother hunted my 420 acre lease all the first week of deer season. He saw not one deer, not one. I hunted Friday of the first week, when he was there, and saw 9. But not a single possible shot opportunity.

My other brother is hunting there this week, in snow, and almost no deer tracks to speak of. Darned things just don't always stay put!



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post #10 of 43 (permalink) Old 12-30-2011, 08:07 PM
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Re: Deer Population question


Quote:
IMO, for a hunter to see 10 deer per day, in general, requires a deer herd that probably will far exceed 20 dpsm.
Not if he counts the same deer twice. Like the guys that say they seen 30-40 deer in one day. How many of those deer went by them more than once--Just sayin

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