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Jackalope

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#1
DOW's chief biologist expects few changes to deer regulations


about 8 hours ago

By ART HOLDEN
Daily Record Outdoor Editor
The 20010-11 deer hunting season is in the books, and though Division of Wildlife chief whitetail biologist Dr. Mike Tonkovich doesn't have the "official" final numbers in yet, he's seen enough to know that no major changes in deer hunting regulations are slated for the foreseeable future.


"Right now, the ball park figure is (a harvest of) 235,000," said Tonkovich, the Division of Wildlife's deer management administrator. "And folks need to keep in mind, even if the harvest is off, I don't feel we have fewer deer."
Last year, the Ohio deer harvest was a record 261,314, and the year before that, 252,017.
There are several factors that play into yearly harvest totals, chief among them weather conditions. This year, severe weather during the muzzleloader season cut into harvest numbers. But what may be the biggest factor this year could have been a bountiful acorn crop.
"There's some validity to the entire mast argument," said Tonkovich. "You couldn't buy an acorn in the woods last year. The squirrels were going nuts looking for acorns and this year is just the opposite."
Squirrel road kills were up last year as the bushy-tails were on the move looking for acorns. The same for deer. Last year they were constantly searching for mast crops, and this year they didn't have a problem finding an area to put on the feed bag.
Backing up that statistic is that last year the Ohio Department of Transportation picked up 18,000 deer from roadways, and this year the number dropped to 15,000.
Numbers, though, are just that -- numbers, and Tonkovich is extremely cautious to base his findings strictly on any totals -- let alone harvest totals.
The public, though, as well as the media, can better relate to numbers -- such as herd size, harvest totals, and licenses sold.
One number the Division of Wildlife used this year was 750,000, as in three-quarters of a million deer prior to the start of the fall hunting season.
Tonkovich says that number is irrelevant when it comes to The Division of Wildlife's management of the whitetail deer.
"We don't manage deer on a statewide population. We manage deer on the county level," said Tonkovich. "In my opinion, 750,000 is a low number. It's a harvest-based total. It's an index, and keep in mind that it changes from one year to the next."
Tonkovich pointed out that without a hunting season, he has no doubt that the deer population "would explode." Hunting is the chief tool the Division of Wildlife uses to manage the herd, and liberal hunting regulations should remain in effect not only for next year's hunting season, but for the next 3-5 years as well.
"We're committed to reducing the population to goal," said Tonkovich. "We're going to keep after them."
Tonkovich says hunting pressure has had a "flat" effect on Wayne County and Holmes County deer populations. "There's been no measurable impact on populations," he said.
In Holmes County, one of the state's top deer-hunting counties, the target goal is 9,500 deer, with the (2009) pre-hunt estimate at 16,000. Numbers are based on buck harvest, bow hunter observations and road kill to name a few. Since 2005, the buck harvest in Holmes County has run right around 2,000, plus or minus 200.
"It's just a frame of reference," said Tonkovich. "They're minimum population numbers."
Maybe the best news Tonkovich got this year when it comes to the public's view of the Division of Wildlife's management of the whitetail population, is the absence of disgruntled hunters.
"I've not heard boo from people," said Tonkovich. "Hunters haven't asked, 'What happened to the deer?' There's not a lot of unhappy hunters out there."

I have to admit though... I thought i heard it all.... I expected the same old "weather" excuse.. And the same old "Food excuse"... BUT Citing Squirrel road kill totals being down as an excuse as to why deer harvests are down predominantly statewide is a new one.. Why does the tap dancing Planters peanut come to mind when i read this..
 

rrr

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#2
boots and popcorn.jpg

I've got my boots and popcorn ready.

Looks like old ODNR hasn't read TOO lately...or any primary source data!
 

rgecko23

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#3
I will say that the deer were hammering the acorns, but are they really saying thats why they think the harvests are down? I know a lot of guys who said, the deer just werent moving because they didnt have to go far to eat. which is true, why did these guys not move their sets to where they think the deer are? probably just being lazy,,,,stand worked last year so it should be where it stays this year. That might have alot to do withi t, just my guess.

I know in my neck of the woods I did not see near the same amount of deer as I usually do, but thats because the farmer did niot plant any crops in our fields this year. i have no clue where they went, I moved and hung stands to try and figure it out, but It didnt work. I had a horrible time on my property this year.

Maybe everyones problem was with acrons? but I saw as many if not more bucks this year taken than in the past. Alot of bone was put on the ground this year.
 
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Jackalope

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#6
I will say that the deer were hammering the acorns, but are they really saying thats why they think the harvests are down? I know a lot of guys who said, the deer just werent moving because they didnt have to go far to eat. which is true, why did these guys not move their sets to where they think the deer are? probably just being lazy,,,,stand worked last year so it should be where it stays this year.
Irrelevant.. Acorns come and go. Weather comes and goes. It's just one of the aspects that we as hunters have to deal with... And DO deal with.. Only someone who assumes were a bunch of bumbling idiots can blame something as trivial as Acorns and Weather. Much less Squirrel roadkill numbers. It would be like saying "Due to the economy many hunters didn't have the funds to tune their bow, buy new strings, or Broadheads.. Or buy as many shells to sight in their guns.. As a result, they missed a bunch of deer this year... Arbitrary speculation... Better known as an EXCUSE..
 

Jackalope

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#7
nice joe, thoguht his head was going to be somewhere else. LOL

I will agree with ( i cant rememebr who said it) that its time for tag reducions in some areas.
We need to have a county by county limit.. But even than it isn't going to help if their overall goal is low numbers.. They can destroy the deer population on a per county basis just as easy as they can on a zone basis...
 

Milo

Tatonka guide.
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#9
While I didn't see deer move as much as I expected, this also isn't the first excellent acorn mast we have had....not sure i remember in recent years the kill being down this much.
 

Jackalope

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#10
While I didn't see deer move as much as I expected, this also isn't the first excellent acorn mast we have had....not sure i remember in recent years the kill being down this much.
On out property in VC Acorns have been great 3 out of the past 4 seasons . Only last year were they nonexistent.
 

Geezer

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Fug the DOW - quit waw waw waw'n bout tage reduction and shit like that and then come on here and brag bout ketch'n 3 or 4 deerz - fug - show some restraint in yur kill'n if ya want the deer numbers ta go up - dang how dumb can some o u fuggn fuggers b - yur almost as dumb as TONK - lmaolmaolmao - OK - uhm done :smiley_clap: - well maybe fo a while anyway :smiley_cigar:

btw - did i tell ya i know some guys that tooked 3 or more deerz and are bitch'n bout the numbers b'n down - wtf :smiley_blackeye:
 
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Jackalope

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#12
Fug the DOW - quit waw waw waw'n bout tage reduction and shit like that and then come on here and brag bout ketch'n 3 or 4 deerz - fug - show some restraint in yur kill'n if ya want the deer numbers ta go up - dang how dumb can some o u fuggn fuggers b - yur almost as dumb as TONK - lmaolmaolmao - OK - uhm done :smiley_clap: - well maybe fo a while anyone :smiley_cigar:

btw - did i tell ya i know some guys that tooked 3 or more deerz and are bitch'n bout the numbers b'n down - wtf :smiley_blackeye:
I shot 1 deer off out property in VC....... 1..
I shot 1 deer in Highland County... 1..
I shot 1 deer Off my property in Clark County .... 1

3 counties...... 3 deer...... Once upon a time before EHD when our VC population could withstand it, i would shoot that many out of the same stand..
 

Geezer

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Well once upon a time - there weren't any deer on Ohio - i wote a thread a few years ago about this being the "Golden Era of Deerhunting" and you young guyz were going to fugg it up - well guess what - thanks for proving my point - you all just killars - dang

:beavis:
 

Jackalope

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Well once upon a time - there weren't any deer on Ohio - i wote a thread a few years ago about this being the "Golden Era of Deerhunting" and you young guyz were going to fugg it up - well guess what - thanks for proving my point - you all just killars - dang

:beavis:
Exactly...


It is not the hunters JOB to limit deer harvest.. That's the entire reason we have departments of natural resources. Because centuries ago we found out that we as humans are incapable of doing that. It's like QDM.. As much as the big buck craze has caught on you still have a vast majority of hunters who could care less and shoot fork horns.. Nothing wrong with that IMO..

But to say 100% of hunters should set their own bag limits lower is ludicrous and a pipe dream.. You'll have better luck wishing for world peace... Such is the Very reason why the ODNR sets limits.. THEY are the ones who should set them LOWER.. It's their job to set the limit. It's our Job to kill them...
 

Geezer

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Exactly...


It is not the hunters JOB to limit deer harvest.. That's the entire reason we have departments of natural resources. Because centuries ago we found out that we as humans are incapable of doing that. It's like QDM.. As much as the big buck craze has caught on you still have a vast majority of hunters who could care less and shoot fork horns.. Nothing wrong with that IMO..

But to say 100% of hunters should set their own bag limits lower is ludicrous and a pipe dream.. You'll have better luck wishing for world peace... Such is the Very reason why the ODNR sets limits.. THEY are the ones who should set them LOWER.. It's their job to set the limit. It's our Job to kill them...
Well what your telling me is that YOUR NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN CONDUCT - oh i forgot - your one of those big goverment guyz that wants the government ta tell ya what's what - dang kidz :beavis:

I didn't say 100% about shit - 100% of the hunters don't take a deer

u just don't get it and never will cuz u a killar - dang :smiley_cigar:
 
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Redhunter1012

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#17
I have a different point of view on it, and it may be a little greedy. I hunt primarily in Hancock county. My area isn't a hotbed but holds a good amouinty of deer and I have seen the population drop a good bit the last 4-5 years. But the Buck/Doe ratio is damn near 1 to 1 in my area. Atleast that is what I saw from the stand this year, and have noticed it getting closer to that each of the past few years. I'm fine with lower numbers in my area if it increases my chances of seeing bucks
 

Jackalope

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#18
Well what your telling me is that YOUR NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN CONDUCT - oh i forgot - your one of those big goverment guyz that wants the government ta tell ya what's what - dang kidz :beavis:

I didn't say 100% about shit - 100% of the hunters don't take a deer

u just don't get it and never will cuz u a killar - dang :smiley_cigar:
Like i said.. I did just that.... I shot 1 deer in 3 counties.... But saying hunters themselves should kill less than the limit the DNR sets, is like saying drivers should limit themselves to 30mph in a 65mph zone..... It Ain't gonna happen...
 

Schu72

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#19
I think most hunters do set their own personal limits. I have never shot more than 3 deer in a year, although I'm certain I could. Just because the DNR gives me the opoportunity to shoot 18 deer doesnt' mean I ever will.
 

Jackalope

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#20
I think most hunters do set their own personal limits. I have never shot more than 3 deer in a year, although I'm certain I could. Just because the DNR gives me the opoportunity to shoot 18 deer doesnt' mean I ever will.

Nor will most.. But for us to see an increase in VC back to pre 2008 levels we will have to shoot either 0 or 1. The limits are arbitrary.. It matters not if it's a 6 deer county and you only shoot 3 if 3 is still too many.. I have a friend who has property in VC that is loaded with stationary cams and has been for years... This was the 2nd year he has put a 0 doe kill rule on the property.. And it's still not back to pre 2008 levels. This was once a property where for years and years they could kill 15+ does out of the same stand year after year and never be hurt the next season.

A limit of 6 with a population of 24,000 and shooting 3.. Is way different than a limit of 6 with a population of 12,000 and shooting 3.. Same limit, Same harvest, but due to the lower overall population it's far more of an impact.

And Tonk himself said

One number the Division of Wildlife used this year was 750,000, as in three-quarters of a million deer prior to the start of the fall hunting season. Tonkovich says "that number is irrelevant when it comes to The Division of Wildlife's management of the whitetail deer."


Funny how it's irrelevant when it could literally make or break a population if it's wrong.. IMO that is by far the single MOST important number to hunters... Having deer, Seeing deer, and Killing Deer..