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Scarity of deer

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Scarity of deer
My son's property (45 acres North of Crivitz, Wi) always has deer but this year for some reason we see none. Would increase of bear population and/or coyotes cause them to move? We still see fresh tracks and it seems they have become night feeders. Anyone have any ideas.
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Re: Scarity of deer In reply to
Bears and coyotes can have an effect as you asked. How about this. Has there been any logging or building around the property. How was this years mast production surrounding you son's property?



Back in Sep. I had lots of deer on my property but had two surrounding neighbors cutting out trees close or near to my property line. Since then no deer sightings during the day. But like you, I've seen tracks that have only come from night time movements.
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Re: Scarity of deer In reply to
When I lived in the UP it was common for deer to migrate from areas where they were only weeks before. In fact, my wife's family has a really nice camp in a seemingly fantastic hunting area that is usually completely devoid of any deer by the time gun season rolls around-making virtually useless for anything other than drinking, playing cards, and looking at dirty magazines...which is precisely what it has been used for the past 80 years.

The fact is, deer migrate to yarding areas as early as late October and early November in the UP and I'm sure in N Wis and N MN. The corridors are legendary for traffic and of course the yard areas are incredible. And, it's not always south...sometimes they'd migrate north to Lake Superior to get closer to the shoreline where the snow depth isn't usually as bad. The migration patterns and corridors can change so I'd say it's possible your son has a migration issue. I would call the regional deer biologist and see what he says.

To answer your question, I have a hard time believing that coyotes or bear could have significant effect on the deer population with possible exception of very localized situations. I think it's more likely that humans have had an impact through poaching or bird hunting or something along those lines.
http://www.anglinoutdoors.com

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Re: Scarity of deer In reply to
Hi Boz,

With all the different seasons now days its hard to know how many deer are shot in an area. Maybe they are being harvested earlier in the fall. The other thing that comes to mind is the wolf population. A few of my buddies have a cabin up in the northwest part of the state (Drummond area) and have seen their deer population drop considerably with the increase in the wolves. For the past 15-20 years they have seen a population that the DNR estimated at 20 deer per square mile. They have been told by the DNR that each wolf accounts for 18 deer per year. Last year they saw 6 different wolves in the area they hunt - not sure but lets say it's 10 square miles. The carrying capacity goal for that area is less than 10 deer per square mile = 100. Wolves will kill 108. I never realized the wolf impact until my buddy put these numbers on the issue but it makes perfect sense that human hunters will suffer.

Pete


Pete


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Re: Scarity of deer In reply to
Wis,
if you're seeing sign, they are obviously still there. Where I hunt in Missouri, they can change their movement patterns based on a lot of variables, just like ducks (weather, food, water (this is key for our place, there's only a few sources of water over a huge area), length of day, when the rut kicks in). As some of the other guys say, look at the area around your property to see what's changed. 45 acres isn't a "home base" for lots of deer, so you will be affected by those owning property around you quite a bit. Did somebody clear out some timber, or put in a new pond which will prevent deer from following an old path or provide a new food source? On our place, when the neighbor took out some fence rows between a couple of fields, it changed deer movement patterns dramatically. They didn't follow that ditch nearly as often anymore, but another ditch 200 yds away was suddenly a new hot spot! You might need to go scouting some more when it snows (fresh tracks will show up easily) and see what the deer are doing to find the new paths.

Scott


The perils of duck hunting are great- especially for the duck. ~Walter Cronkite
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Re: Scarity of deer In reply to
Keep in mind Pete that a wolf food unit is considered one whitetail deer. Which means, a moose counts as three units and a turkey counts a quarter etc. They eat many other things besides deer. When I did scatological examinations of wolf shit we were amazed at the variety of food they consumed...beaver was one big component but most of the crap also had crow or turkey feathers in it. When I studied wolves at Northern the general consensus was that each wolf eats approximately 8 or maybe 10 deer a year...that may've changed. The other thing to consider is that by and large wolves eat the weak, old, sick or genetically inferior and of course young deer. For them to catch any healthy adult deer is nothing short of an olympic fete.

I'd wager that haying in LaPorte Co. Indiana account for as many fawns as the entire population of wolves in the E. UP and we're crawling with deer. My point is, just because they can eat 18 or 20 deer a year doesn't mean they will. Considering the winter yard kill in the UP can range well into the tens of the thousands it's my opinion that wolves are fairly insignificant as far as the big picture goes. And, I also believe that large predators have a positive impact on the deer population in general...certainly coyotes have down here when it comes to deer and turkeys. And, coyotes tend to kill or haze smaller predators out of an area so game bird populations have boomed over the past ten years down here. I think of wolves as much the same way...putting things back in order etc.
http://www.anglinoutdoors.com

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Re: Scarity of deer In reply to
Scott:
That makes sense.
wis boz