I've mentioned the chance of a non-invite to my usual guests. I think I might just go with "wall-hanger or bust" rules instead of a no-hunt year. There's a couple good size brutes in the herd right now. I know I can trust them to not shoot anything they know is off-limits for the benefit of future hunting.
Either our retention or recruitment is very good on my block (the herd is bigger than previous years at the moment), but not seeing multiple fawns means my neighbors typical hunting will put a severe hurt on the number of deer which remain to restock next year - knowing that, I can't add to the problem. I'll buy half a cow if I don't get a deer. I'd rather go lean now than have nothing left later.
I would agree with that. I didn't hunt my area during the boom years, but the guys in our group that did said it was a regular state highway rolling down our gravel road on sunday afternoon. This year was already pretty quiet, and shooting was even quieter. It may be the relief our area needs to have a chance at rebounding. The one positive we've go so far is that we haven't seen the dogs and wolves running deer on our cameras yet. It's gotta be miserable hunting for dogs and yotes in the woods for how thick and green it is on our property.
Bait and ambush is the only way to hunt them at my place too. I've called till I was blue in the face and never saw a dog, but put some bait out and within a few hours something will come along and eat it (right after I had to go back home).