Opening day silence

chummer

5 year old buck +
Today is the start of our 6 week riffle season. Despite perfect conditions there has not been one shot. Not even one that sounds like it is 5 miles away. I have had a bad feeling all summer about the damage last winter did, this is more confirmation. The bird hunters on the reservoir sounded like they had a good morning, maybe it is time to take up duck hunting.
 

bwoods11

5 year old buck +
Where is there a 6 week rifle season?
 

chummer

5 year old buck +
Where is there a 6 week rifle season?
Northern half of NY. NY doesn't mess around, they want to make sure all bucks are dead.
 
B

bat man

Guest
How long has the season been 6 weeks

We talk in MN how the season used to be 2 days shotgun in many areas. Lots of those spots are nine days rifle with lots of cross tagging.
 

chummer

5 year old buck +
How long has the season been 6 weeks

We talk in MN how the season used to be 2 days shotgun in many areas. Lots of those spots are nine days rifle with lots of cross tagging.
As long as I can remember. Cross tagging is a killer. The guys next to me shoot every buck they see but never run out of tags. Luckily I am in the one small section that doesn't have doe permits or I would never see a deer. Wow first shot 940am, about 1 mile away.
 

SD51555

5 year old buck +
Same thing is underway in MN. The Outdoor News reported this week our archery kill is off 19% so far. The blame is being placed on our bucks-only zones. This is the first year 60+ gang could use crossbows too. I know the crossbow impact is debatable, but what if crossbows weren't freed up for more this year? Down 21, 23, 26%? I'm not against crossbows, I just pose that as a potential buffer to a deeper harvest decline.

I bought a clicker to count shots on opening weekend this year. If I don't see any deer, at least I can keep myself counting the few shots heard.
 

THunter

5 year old buck +
Where is there a 6 week rifle season?

Rifle is 11 weeks here in Georgia, and you ain't gonna believe this, but we've got TONS of deer---and the limit is 12!
 
B

bat man

Guest
Rifle is 11 weeks here in Georgia, and you ain't gonna believe this, but we've got TONS of deer---and the limit is 12!
I was looking at MS and they only have 200,000 hunters and lots of deer with triplets and no winter kill.

MN has closer to 500,000 deer hunters and maybe 600,000 adult deer this fall. Likely less deer than that,
 

huntall

5 year old buck +
I was looking at MS and they only have 200,000 hunters and lots of deer with triplets and no winter kill.

MN has closer to 500,000 deer hunters and maybe 600,000 adult deer this fall. Likely less deer than that,
yep...long gun season and 5 doe 3 buck per person limit.
Like you said ....winter is not a factor on population at all.
 

Natty Bumppo

5 year old buck +
Today is the start of our 6 week riffle season. Despite perfect conditions there has not been one shot. Not even one that sounds like it is 5 miles away. I have had a bad feeling all summer about the damage last winter did, this is more confirmation. The bird hunters on the reservoir sounded like they had a good morning, maybe it is time to take up duck hunting.

That's a bummer chummer. I've had that same feeling over here in Northwest Mass. There is almost no buck sign in the woods and I have only 2 unique bucks on camera compared to 10 last year at this same time. I think it's going to be a slow year in the Northeast. I have a feeling last winter, especially the prolonged cold March that we had, took a toll.
 

foggy

5 year old buck +
That's a bummer chummer. I've had that same feeling over here in Northwest Mass. There is almost no buck sign in the woods and I have only 2 unique bucks on camera compared to 10 last year at this same time. I think it's going to be a slow year in the Northeast. I have a feeling last winter, especially the prolonged cold March that we had, took a toll.[/QUOTE

What kinda temps you get in Mass Natty? I got a hard time imagining that cold weather would impact deer where you are. No?
 

Greta&Gus

5 year old buck +
Rifle is 11 weeks here in Georgia, and you ain't gonna believe this, but we've got TONS of deer---and the limit is 12!
Do you guys have quality hunting with daytime activity during your rifle season? When is your rut?
 

Bowsnbucks

5 year old buck +
Chummer - Sorry to hear it's so quiet up there. You guys DO get beastly winters east of L. Ontario. Last winter worse than most. If winter took a toll, maybe it's not so bad that it's quiet. Might give the survivors a chance to build up a bit.

In northern Pa. it's quite different than it used to be. 1970's and 80's - it was nothing to count 70 - 80 shots first day of rifle season. The last 10 or 12 years, we typically hear from 6 to 12 shots on the first day. Where my camp is located, we're on the eastern side of the Allegheny plateau. High, flat-topped ridges and deep hollows. When we're up in a tree stand on a ridge top, we can hear shots for 5 - 6 miles in any direction. We make it a point to count the shots so we have a sort of running record to compare year to year. When you consider that deer drives are a common way of hunting here in Pa., it makes the shot count even more spooky.

I hope your area recovers to a comfortable number of deer, and you get a break for a couple winters.
 

Natty Bumppo

5 year old buck +
What kinda temps you get in Mass Natty? I got a hard time imagining that cold weather would impact deer where you are. No?

Foggy, Northwest Mass. isn't as balmy as you might think. We are in the mountains so elevation also plays a role. And temperature definitely has an effect in the overall picture…it's just one part of the equation. We have no AG around here. None. We also have no hard mast. So, for the duration of the winter the deer in my neck of the woods are on a very poor quality browse. So, no food and below average cold temps. is an abnormally poor situation for deer around here. With an abnormally cold winter here we also had more and deeper snow than normal which is great for coyotes and very bad for deer. Lastly, green-up, which normally occurs here in mid-March when the deer are their last energy reserves, did not occur until mid-April. That last factor alone probably did the most damage to already winter weakened deer.

So, yes, while it might not be as cold here as it is in zone 3 MN, relative to what normally happens here every winter, the deer suffered very badly last winter…and I think the evidence I am seeing and what I am hearing from other hunters will show that the deer pop. did take a hit last year.
 

bwoods11

5 year old buck +
Rifle is 11 weeks here in Georgia, and you ain't gonna believe this, but we've got TONS of deer---and the limit is 12!

THunter-how do they enforce a limit of 12? Do you get tags...each tag come with a cost?

It's amazing Georgia puts out some big deer too!!
 

chummer

5 year old buck +
That's a bummer chummer. I've had that same feeling over here in Northwest Mass. There is almost no buck sign in the woods and I have only 2 unique bucks on camera compared to 10 last year at this same time. I think it's going to be a slow year in the Northeast. I have a feeling last winter, especially the prolonged cold March that we had, took a toll.
Our areas sound identical plus or minus 300" of snow. The discouraging part is I think there was close to 90% winter kill on last years fawns. My cameras cover 200 acres and I have only seen 1 yearling doe and 0 yearling bucks. We lost an entire year of fawns.
 

Natty Bumppo

5 year old buck +
Our areas sound identical plus or minus 300" of snow. The discouraging part is I think there was close to 90% winter kill on last years fawns. My cameras cover 200 acres and I have only seen 1 yearling doe and 0 yearling bucks. We lost an entire year of fawns.

Yeah, that's tough. We don't have that kind of snow. I can imagine that really hammers fawns.
 

foggy

5 year old buck +
Thanks Natty. Hard to get a handle on weather extremes in other parts of the country. Sometimes you just gotta "be there".
 

Natty Bumppo

5 year old buck +
Thanks Natty. Hard to get a handle on weather extremes in other parts of the country. Sometimes you just gotta "be there".

You bet foggy. I gotta tell you…when I see you guys from MN start posting your descriptions of rifle season at below zero with howling winds I just don't know how you all keep warm, especially on those all day sits. I think that must take a special kind of toughness…physical and mental.
 

Bowsnbucks

5 year old buck +
For those of you who have never experienced a " lake effect " snow - let me clue you in. Where Chummer lives is in a BIG-TIME snow belt. I worked on a power plant that was built very near where he lives during a whole winter. Several times that winter, when we came out of the plant at the end of the day ( after dark ) we stood at the base of a 60 ft. light pole in the parking lot. It had 5 of those sodium " yellow glow " lights at the top. When we looked up, we couldn't even see a HINT of light !!! It was a tough task to even find the row you were parked in because first you had to find the closest row to the plant - then feel your way to the number of the row you parked in. It was literally like being blind. This info is NOT an exaggeration. Being from the mountains of northern Pa., I thought I knew what heavy snow & " whiteout " meant. NOT EVEN CLOSE. In Chummer's area, getting 3 ft. of snow overnight and 2 days later getting another 18" to 2 ft. is not uncommon. I don't know how a fawn would survive floundering in that stuff.
 
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