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From the Times & Transcript today :

Figures for season better than expected but still low

Deer hunters fared better than some had expected during the month-long hunting season that ended Saturday, but "better" is a relative term.

Hunters registered 4,755 deer by season's end. On one hand, biologists estimated earlier this year that only about 3,500 deer would be taken this fall, so in contrast to that figure, those taking part in the province's most popular hunting season should be pleased. On the other hand, this year's take represents the fourth-worst results since the advent of modern record-keeping in this province a half-century ago and compares poorly to the pinnacle of deer hunting in New Brunswick in the mid-1980s, when around 30,000 deer were taken by hunters each season.

The figures for 2011 are preliminary and are subject to adjustment.

The number of deer taken annually by hunters has been on a general downward trend since 1985, and so have the number of deer hunters. Where in 1982 the number of licences sold peaked at almost 118,000, last year just less than 48,000 licences were sold. The tally for this past season won't be known until later.

The triangle loosely bounded by Sussex, St. George and Fredericton accounted for most of hunters' success, with slightly more than 3,000 deer registered in that area.

Bow hunters registered 137 deer, their second-best tally, topped only by the 141 they took in 2009 and the same number they took in 2007. Bow hunting is thought to be growing in popularity which would account for at least some of the increasing number of deer being taken by the bow.

For the first time, crossbows were allowed to be used for deer hunting in New Brunswick but it's not yet known how many of the total were registered by arbalists.

As often occurs, the final week of the season proved the most productive, with 1,341 deer registered. The first week of the season was almost its equal, with 1,309. Hunters registered 1,026 deer during the third week while the season's second week was the least fruitful, with 942 deer killed.
 

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Pray for no major amount of snow and hopefully the deer will have a good winter. There are a few legislations i would like to see implemented and one would be that if you apply for and are drawn for a doe tag that you must use that tag for doe only no bucks...the way i see it is i get pretty frustrated learning about people with doe tags who pass on does waiting for a buck and then their tag goes unfilled and i know for myself as an example would never pass on a doe...my family only hunts for the meat and we look forward to it each year and each that goes unfilled by some hunters who are chasing antler, just makes others chances of getting a doe tag lower. Sorry for the bit of a rant but just some feelings. Oh and our season has to be later into the fall, I am born and bred in NB but now live in NS due to military posting but with the season running longer down here i can see a huge difference in the RUT, its going full on down here now and it is really jsut starting to pick up...should be a good last couple weeks here.

Anyways i would love to hear peoples thoughts.

Cheers,
Russ
 

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We also have to realize that having out season later in NB would surely make the Rut more into effect, this would also result in more big bucks killed, and probebly more hunters being happy about it...for a little while...what we don't realize is if we put the season back, with more kills happening, it woudn't take very long for there to be NO season in NB...

hunting is not supposed to be easy, the whitetail is one of the (if not the) smartest animal in North America. putting the season back would make for easier kill as the bucks are thinking wth their wrong head...

There is a great reason for the season to be in the times that's it at in NB i'm sure

again, my 0.02
 

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I have no problem with the idea of people who apply for doe tags have to use them on does but you better remember that IF such a thing happens there will be LESS doe tags available. Right now DNR looks at the percentage of hunters who are successful and give out the appropriate number of tags, so if hunter success is 33% they issue three times the numer of tags for the number they figure they want harvested. So if they want 1000 does harvested they issue 3000 tags. If you have to kill a doe with your tag, hunter success will go up, lets say to 50%. Then they are only going to issue 2000 tags instead of 3000 and depending on how many apply you may or may not be better off getting drawn. Six of one, half dozen of the other IMO

As to a later season... while I'd like to hunt later, I think it is a bad idea for our herd.
 

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Well I must be the only one left that wants to save does. I always get my antlerless tag for zone 22 and throw it away. I will continue this till we have a bigger deer herd. Sorry off topic.
 

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Well I must be the only one left that wants to save does. I always get my antlerless tag for zone 22 and throw it away. I will continue this till we have a bigger deer herd. Sorry off topic.
Thanks alot 4evrhntn. That's as bad as the anti-hunters applying for moose license so they can save a moose. Or at least deprive someone else of the opportunity.
 

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Your welcome. I really dont think they compare at all though. Keep trying though???
It's definitely not on the same scale, but it's the same principle. What do you think the difference between " I always apply for my antlerless tag for zone 22 and would throw it away" and "I always apply for my Moose License and would throw it away"? Both are attempts at "protecting the herd".

I don't feel like what you're doing is anything noble. Not trying to offend you, but that's just the way I see it. Rod works hard each year to determine the amount of doe tags should be allocated. The major reason why it's so hard is because so many of us consider the doe tag to be a "booby" prize and don't shoot does even though we get the tag. I'm guilty of this as well, I've had a doe tag nearly half the years I've applied for them, and I've yet to actually pull the trigger on a doe.
 

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I dont believe we have enough deer in this province to be shooting does. I know this goes against what our biologist say but I belive that it is true. There are localized spots that seem to have lots of does but they are few and farther between. Without all the does we can get to survive there will be no NB herd. PS If I get a moose tag I am not going to shoot a cow either.
 

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as far as shooting does.....yes if we start shooting nothing but does then it will have an affect on the deer herd
BUT
look at how many young bucks were harvest this year....i think that is harder on the deer herd than shooting all the does!

just my 2 cents

as i said in previous post.....it is not just one thing that is killing our deer herd!
 

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When you watch the shows on TV (yes I am aware that our situation is just a little different here) they always talk about the buck to doe ratio. If we keep shooting bucks (big and small) the ones remaining can and in some rare cases breed themselves to death. All I know is that the guys on these shows seem to know what they are talking about.

So in my opinion you are doing the herd a favor by harvesting the odd doe. Not a thing wrong with harvesting a nice mature doe.

I do agree 4evrhuntn with you saying that there are areas with "clusters" of does and hardly any in other areas.

Would be nice to have numbers like we had 30 yrs ago (im 26 and I would love to experience deer hunting like that around here)
 

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I've Always Said...
Ya Gotta Slay Alot Of Dragons, Before Ya Find a Princess!
Hawoooooooooooooooooo CMON
 

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Cory the only thing with most of the states where guys are talking about D:B ratios, they do not have our B:D ratio, it is a lot higher. Now some of the managed ranches are kept fairly low at 1.5:1 or so but a lot of the wild ground is running 3:1 to 5:1. NB's average ratio is about 2.5:1, some of the zones less and some like 22 I think is around 2.8:1 does to bucks. It isn't an unhealthy ratio either way.
 

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I just came back from Northern Saskatchewan and the buck to doe ratio is more like 2 does for every buck from what I have seen in 6 days of hunting.

You can tell me whatever you want about this province being somewhere around 2 1/2 to 1 or whatever you experts think it is. I have seen the 2 to 1 ratio in another province and the country I hunted was big heavy woods bordered by crops that were cut such as wheat and alfalfa. Lots of bluffs and wooded areas. Lots of evergreen trees such as pines and spruce.

I saw the does and I saw the bucks. The numbers justify it. I can tell you one thing for sure. The closest thing I have found for similar ground was between Havelock and Sussex area. Very similar terrain. And I know for sure I don't see a buck for every 2 does there.

You can tell me whatever you want about your camera surveys blah blah blah! I have put out cameras much longer then most and many of them for months and years. This B.S. about doing a camera survey is ridiculous. I've put them out in just about every type of terrain and and just about every type of situation and our ratio is not even 3 to 1.

So to think our ratio is a bit higher then 2 to 1 is absurd. The only way to get our ratio up to 2 to 1 is to stop shooting 80% male deer. But good luck convincing the experts who say we can't shoot off our bucks.

Put a point rule in place and let some quit deer hunting. I'm sure they will get back into it in a few years when some of their die hard buddies show up with big bucks and talk about the good buck sign they are finding.

I would rather see a harvest of 1000 deer then the current 5000 to know in a few years we would have a better balanced herd. I'm sure some guys would quit deer hunting with a point rule in place but then they would end up buying their meat at Sobeys
 

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So what is the ratio for Sask in the area you were hunting? Do you even know or are you just going from observation. You see more bucks because there are more deer and you automatically think they have a better structure. If you asked guys in the 80's what we had for structure they would say it was better for the simple fact they were seeing more bucks because we had more deer.
I also keep cameras out all year, 9 of them actually for the last several years so I doubt you have too many more out. You can blah blah all you want about the camera surveys but I have a 2.8:1 D:B ratio which is in line with what the province says I have so i would guess it's pretty close. Not saying there are 2.8 does to every mature buck but I do have 2:8 does to every buck I have captured on camera not including fawns (buttons) and I am within the sussex area.
80 % bucks when they limit doe tags isn't unreasonable. If you were talking Pa where they shot 80% of their yearlings then it would be a different story. With less than 50,000 hunters and less than a 30% success I would think it a mute point.
Only thing a point rule would do at this stage of the game is highgrade our yearlings.
 

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[sup]Bowtech,[/sup]

[sup]I don't need to read about your little oasis in Bellisle Creek. You will never convince me that you know what the doe to buck ratio is where I hunt or for the rest of the province. It may be that way where your farm is but your land is not representative of the province. If you think so then you need to get off your farm and hunt some other land. Even some of your friends don't agree. How come the majority of hunters would agree the buck to doe ratio is not what you say it is. Come on? Get off the farm and realize what everybody else is seeing. Some damn good hunters on here with many cameras are saying the same as I am. But we must all be wrong. [/sup]
 

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You want to know why most hunters think the ratios are out of whack, it's because they aren't seeing bucks when they are out hunting. Numbers go down and everyones perception is there are no bucks, get the numbers back up and let everyone start seeing bucks again and all of a sudden we don't have any ratio problems any more. Go figure


They see 6 deer standing in a field in the fall as they are driving by and they don't see any headgear standing straight up and it becomes 6 does in their minds. When it's one spike, two does, a yearling doe and a set of twin fawns, one of which is a button buck. Next field has 8 deer and they see one two year old along with 7 "Does". Two of which happen to be button fawns, one doe fawn, a pair of yearling does and 2 adult does. The big boy is standing back just inside the trees waiting for dark. The next field has one deer way back but they can't tell what it is but since the headgear isn't visible from 600 yards it becomes a doe as well when it's a fork horn. When they get back home they tell their buddies there are no bucks around, just one small buck out of 20 deer they saw this evening because they didn't actually count them, just rounded the numbers off. The real numbers though are 4 bucks, 7 does and 5 fawns. You can even add a few more does for good measure, lets throw in the same number as all the bucks at 4 to get it up to 11 and you still aren't at a 2.8:1 ratio
Less than 70,000 deer with next to none of them on crown and that is the kind of response you'll get. Double or Triple the numbers and guys start seeing 2 or three bucks in a field and all of a sudden we don't have ratio problems any more when all that has really happened is that there are more deer and therefore more bucks but the ratio hasn't changed.

I have permission on more than 1/2 dozen properties in three zones. I ran cameras on three different properties in zone 22 and 23 this fall and have buddies in zone 22, 23, 16, 3 and 18 who also run 2-8 cameras and all of them are seeing decent ratios. Maybe not the numbers we had previously but the ratios aren't out of whack. I guess we're all wrong
 
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