WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

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BackWoodsHunter
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WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BackWoodsHunter » Thu Nov 11, 2010 6:42 am

Hey guys I got a problem. I've taken an interest in hunting the George Mead wildlife area (central part of the state). I'm living in Stevens Point have been up there scouting a bit, found a big buck dead, tons of buck sign and sent a few buddies in the right direction of some spots I found they have all seen deer on sits, not huge bucks but they see antlers. Anyhow last night we went shining and made a massive loop around the place cutting in back roads we knew had planted fields etc and we hardly saw any deer. We shined well over 100 deer and maybe 20 were on public ground. The worst part was that only two were bucks. We shined one massive 10pt and one decent 8pt. The 8pt was on public land but in an area designated as "wildlife" refuge the 10 was across the street. What I found to be strange is that we shined tons of does, tons and tons of does. As in fields of does. Averaging 10-12 in most fields. Lots of them were bedded within 30yards of the road on cut hay fields. It made no sense I've never seen this before. They knew where they were safe though all of them were on the opposite side of the road from the public land. What puzzles me is how come the only chasing we saw was a coyote chasing a doe and two fawns? In all these fields of does there were no bucks to be seen. How come nothing was chasing, breeding, locked down etc? If the numbers in this part of the state are that skewed how do all the does that go into estrous get bred? I'm puzzled and bummed at the lack of deer which is why I'm typing on this computer instead of hunting.


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BigHills BuckHunter
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BigHills BuckHunter » Thu Nov 11, 2010 6:51 am

I attend college in Stevens Point and know Meade relatively well. I know a few guys that bowhunt it. I had the same thing happen to me last weekend while shining. I saw 37 does total and 3 bucks. I think I figured out what was going on tho. Two bucks I did see were dandies but they were bedded with does in either thick brush or crp. I believe what you witnessed last night could be a sort of lockdown where the bucks have their does and just stay close to them bedded in thick cover. The does that are not in heat are out in the fields like usuall but the hot does are bedded with bucks. Thats my theory and the only one that makes sense to me as of right now. But I would think with that many does you seen you would have a huge doe to buck ratio? It almost made me think when I was shining. Does every single buck have a doe right now?
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BackWoodsHunter
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BackWoodsHunter » Thu Nov 11, 2010 6:56 am

My thoughts exactly it was really, really weird. What I found weirder was that multiple does were bedded within 30-40yards of the road in wide open hayfields that had been cut. The one monster buck we saw was down in some nasty thick stuff most likely with a doe we couldnt see and the other buck was in the refuge area in tall grass next to a run down barn we could just see his tines out of the grass and he was standing up. I just would think with that many does out and about there would be one or two bucks nosing them around. My main concern is that I missed the rut because we never shined a buck cruising or anything either. Very strange.
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BigHills BuckHunter
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BigHills BuckHunter » Thu Nov 11, 2010 11:17 am

Ive seen the crusing and chasing which was about a week or two ago. It seems now there is lockdown but remember the doe is only in estrus for about 3 days then the buck needs to start crusing to find another one in heat. As Dan says there is no such thing as a complete lockdown even tho it might seem like it from what we have observed. Im very curious about us not seeing any bucks checking those does in the field. I would think we would have at least seen some yearlings or 2.5 out there at least scent checking the scene but like we have said the only ones we saw were mature and with does in thick cover. Really confuses me. I wouldnt think every buck would have a doe at the same time. Maybe the bucks were scent checking the does in the fields from thick cover and we just didnt see them. That could be.
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BackWoodsHunter » Thu Nov 11, 2010 12:20 pm

maybe we did shine a few fields with sets of eyes off in the brush. So realistically we probably shined 5-6 bucks but still we saw SOOOO many does like you said pretty strange they'd all have a doe. The other conclusion we came to was, its public land, I don't know about you but most guys are "its brown its down" out there. Mainly because the chance of getting a shot at another deer are slim to none with so much pressure. We kind of decided because the yearling bucks are most likely the dumbest ones its most likely we don't see many simply because there aren't many. If there are ten hunters out there and every one of them has a shot at a spike buck you know atleast of 8 of them if not all ten will take the shot. I found some great spots that had seemingly no pressure only to return to hunt them and find multiple vehicles parked there. The lack of yearling sightings is probably due to an actual lack of yearlings....I'm interested to hear Dan's input.
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby dan » Thu Nov 11, 2010 1:18 pm

I think most of the bucks are with an estrous doe right now in thick brush. It is funny that you did not see many bucks nosing around the bedded does, but there is probably a skewed buck to doe ratio.
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BackWoodsHunter
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BackWoodsHunter » Thu Nov 11, 2010 1:24 pm

my thoughts exactly but there is so much pressure out there even the rut might not draw them out of the thick stuff much. Not to mention the brown its down strategy resulting in fewer young deer...
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BigHills BuckHunter
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BigHills BuckHunter » Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:12 am

BackWoodsHunter wrote:my thoughts exactly but there is so much pressure out there even the rut might not draw them out of the thick stuff much. Not to mention the brown its down strategy resulting in fewer young deer...


This coming weekend the first cycling does will be over with and I think we have a little window the next few days where there could be some good movement for us Backwoods. I dont hunt Meade like you do but my reccomendation for that piece of public is get as far away from roads as possible. I have never seen so much pressure on a piece of public land in my life. You might have to go in deep to find those traveling routes and yes it very well could be in thick brush.
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Re: WHERE ARE MY BUCKS AT???

Unread postby BackWoodsHunter » Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:38 am

I don't hunt much out there either. Usually go the extra hour north and hunt with grandpa. We don't see much for big deer but we usually have fun. I am onto one buck out there in mead he's a 1.5 mile paddle in though according to google maps. Other than that the deer numbers in general, due to the presence of so many ppl, are really slim.
"The history of the bow and arrow is the history of mankind." Fred Bear


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